Flawless Skin and Effects of Aging on Skin


flawless skin

How to Get Flawless Skin

In the next several articles we will be pointing out different troublesome skin conditions and their causes and prevention.  We will also be researching ways to treat these conditions and begin our journey on how to have  flawless skin.  Some of the treatments and the prevention  will be as organic as possible.

The Effects of Aging on Skin

Your skin undergoes many changes as you age.  That could be years of overexposing your skin to the sun, smoking, diet, and changes that normally occur with aging.  As you age, your skin becomes less smooth and less tight as it was  before. It will become drier, more fragile, and thinner than when you were younger.  The walls of the blood vessels become weaker causing the skin to bruise more easily.  This is one of the effects of aging on skin. This would certainly be a road block in the search for  flawless skin.

As you age you lose fat below the surface of your skin in your cheeks, temples, chin, nose, and around your eyes causing the skin to loosen. Losing bone around the mouth will cause a puckering and wrinkles. If you lose cartilage around the nose  it may change also.  You may notice creases appearing on your forehead, temples, cheeks, and around your mouth. These are results of different facial expressions.  They are sometimes called frown lines.  Gravity plays a big role in aging our skin.  When the skin becomes less supple gravity takes over and causes the eyebrows and eyelids to sag or droop.  This sagging, caused by gravity, creates looseness under the cheeks and jaw. This results in what is referred to as a double chin and lengthened ear lobes. We should be strive to have flawless skin before this process begins.

Wrinkle Prevention For Flawless Skin

Regardless of our age and when we start to see the signs of aging we begin to find methods of wrinkle prevention.  We can’t control the effects that gravity has on our skin but there are ways we can protect our skin and make a difference.  A visit to the dermatologist will help but there are several things you can do on your own instead of sitting and feeling helpless.  I have listed the things I believe to be most important in helping you fight the battle and ways to get  flawless skin.

  • Protect your skin from the sun.  This is vital if you are striving to have flawless skin.   Dozens of studies have documented the impact the sun has on our skin.  Some of these studies have shown that the sun plays a bigger factor on aging skin that heredity.
  • Use Sunscreen. It not only protects you from the dreaded skin cancer but it helps to prevent premature wrinkling of the skin.
  • Do not Smoke.  Studies have confirmed that cigarette smoke can cause aging skin. Research has shown that it releases an enzyme that breaks down collagen and elastin.  These are important components of the skin.  The Twin Research Unit at St. Thomas Hospital in London found studies done on siblings found the one that smoked had more wrinkles and 40% thinner skin than the non-smoker.
  • Get plenty of rest and sleep. Without adequate sleep, your body will produce too much  cortisol. This is a hormone that actually breaks down skin cells.  If you get proper rest and sleep, your body will produce more human growth hormone ( HGH).  This helps the skin to stay thicker and more elastic and therefore, less wrinkles.
  • Try your best to sleep on you back.  Sleeping on your side constantly will cause sleep creases.  These are wrinkles that become creased into your skin. They do not go away when you get up.  If you sleep face down, you may get a wrinkled brow. Again, if at all possible, sleep on your back.
  • Make sure you have proper reading glasses.  Squinting repetitively causes a crease under the surface which eventually becomes a wrinkle.
  • Wear sunglasses.  They help protect your skin around the eyes and also keep you from squinting.  Remember that squinting causes creases or wrinkles and is detrimental to having  flawless skin.
  • Add plenty of fish to your diet.  Salmon and other cold water fish is a good source of protein which is so important to your skin.  It also provides a very important fatty acid called omega-3.  This nourishes the skin keeping it plump and young looking with less wrinkles.  I do believe that diet will certainly be one of the most important things to help you to have  flawless skin.
  • Try adding  soy to your diet.  Soy protein may assist in collagen regulation, and skin moisture.  Soy also binds onto a certain form of protein in a cell called deacetylated histones.  This protein helps contain the long strands of DNA into tight coils.  Soy will target those cells before they undergo a process that has been linked to proliferation of the cell.
  • Replace coffee with cocoa.  According to a study,  research found cocoa to contain high levels of epicatchin and catechin.  These two dietary flavanols will protect the skin from sun damage and improve circulation in skin cells which affects hydration making the skin look and feel smoother.
  • Make sure to add plenty of fruits and vegetables to your diet.  They are valuable because of their antioxidant compounds which fight damage by unstable molecules (free radicals) which cause damage to the cells.  This helps to keep the skin looking younger and helps to prevent some effects of photo aging thus lessening the effects of aging on skin.
  • Get a good moisturizer.  This will help soften the skin and make it more youthful looking.  When your skin is moist, it looks more youthful and the wrinkles can be less noticeable.
  • Be careful not to over-wash your face.  This can deprive your skin of the natural oils and moisture that guard against wrinkles. Use a moisturizing soap if possible.  If you don’t use a moisturizing soap, use a facial cleanser. Remember to moisturize, moisturize!
  • Exfoliate!.!! Exfoliate!  New skin is always being created in the lower layer and begins a 30 day migration to the surface.  This is a natural process of skin erosion. During the aging process the skin becomes dry and scaly and rough looking. Exfoliation removes these dead skin cells of this outer layer and unclogs the pores.  Exfoliating will reveal the new and healthy skin and gets you closer to having flawless skin. It cleans the skin and can help prevent acne. You should do this each time you wash your face.  Since the face is a very sensitive area this process can dry the skin out so it is so very important to use a good moisturizer afterwards.  Moisturizing is just as important because as we related earlier in this article, drying can cause the skin to wrinkle and show signs of aging skin.

All of the above are very important components when searching for  flawless skin.

Watch for our next article on Cellulite.  This troublesome skin problem can certainly be a road block on our way to having flawless skin.

Kate Alka Miles/Beautiful Skin Advisor/Counselor

 

 

 

 

 

 

Psoriasis A Chronic Autoimmune Skin Disorder


What is Psoriasis?

Psoriasis is a very sore, inflamed, and scratchy prolonged and chronic skin condition.  It causes red, irritating patches on the skin. These patches are not infectious and are typically enveloped in a white accumulation of dead skin cells. Scientists do not know the cause but they do know that psoriasis is associated with a genetic dysfunction that prompts an inappropriate immune response.  This response leads to the fast overproduction of new skin cells.  They also believe that in many cases, environmental elements may also play a role in the cause of psoriasis.

Guttate_Psoriasis

 

• How Will I Identify Psoriasis?                                                                                     

Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune disorder that affects the skin.  In some cases it can affect the joints.  This condition is believed to affect as many as 7.5 million Americans. Scientific researchers believe that an amalgamation of genetic and environmental elements trigger the immune system, which in turn conducts faulty signals causing the overproduction of new skin cells. Those additional cells typically accumulate into red, crusty blotches on the body. They are not contagious but they can be extremely itchy and painful. There are minor cases of the disease where less than 10% if the body becomes affected.  Other outbreaks can envelope 20 to 90% of the body.

Guttate_Psoriasis2

• Who is Susceptible?

Psoriasis is typically diagnosed mostly in early adulthood between the ages of 20 and 35.  Infections and stress can spark psoriasis in those who are genetically susceptible to it. A bacterial infection like strep throat can trigger psoriasis.  If you’re genetically susceptible for psoriasis, avoid any triggers such as alcohol, stress, and skin injuries.  Avoiding these triggers  may decrease your probability of getting the disease.

 

Types of Psoriasis

 

  • Psoriatic Arthritis

Swelling of the joints is a typical painful symptom of psoriatic arthritis.  This can develop before or after a person is diagnosed with psoriasis. Research tells us that as many as 30%  of people with psoriasis will also have psoriasis arthritis.   Your psoriasis may start up with no warning or be sparked by stress, a skin injury, dry skin, or an infection.  It can abate as fast as it came, but it normally needs medical treatment to keep it from getting worse.   The main symptoms are pain and stiffness in a joint .  It can take almost an hour upon getting up in the morning to loosen up the joints.  This stiffness and tendinitis are signs of psoriasis arthritis.

Joint symptoms that last more than a few weeks should be medically assessed to see if  psoriatic arthritis has developed.   People with mild psoriasis might be just as apt to get arthritis as those  with a severe form of the disease.  Psoriasis arthritis  is not as visibly painful as other forms of arthritis, it should be treated  to minimize pain and maximize joint function.

  • Plaque Psoriasis

The typical places to find the thick, red patches of plaque psoriasis are on the elbows, knees, and scalp. But it can appear on the chest, face, palms, groin area, or in the armpits.  It is really incapacitating when it crops up on the soles of the feet and the palms of the hands.  If it affects the groin and the genital area, it will be very uncomfortable.  It can crop up almost anywhere including the mouth.  Almost 90% of those with psoriasis have this type.  Red, elevated blotches covered in white, flaking scales that is found on the knees, elbows, scalp, hands, feet, and or lower back.  There may be itching, nail disfigurement and discoloration or thickened nails that separate from the nail bed.  There may be dry or cracked skin that bleeds.  It is the most common type of psoriasis.

  • Inverse Psoriasis

Inverse psoriasis cultivates in the folds of the skin such as the armpits, groin, under the breasts, around the genitals and buttocks, and sometimes behind the ears. It is aggravated by chafing and sweating. This is most prevalent in people who are overweight.  It often starts out very inflamed and not having much scale.  The outbreak area may appear shiny.

 

  • Guttate Psoriasis

Guttate Psoriasis affects up to 10% of people with psoriasis.   Guttate is the second most common type of the psoriasis.  This typically affects people under the age of 30.  The patches are smaller and look like resemble water drops.  They typically appear suddenly and often follow a cold or an upper respiratory infection. The major cause of guttate psoriasis outbreak is strep throat. The plaque patches typically appear on the chest or trunk, arms, legs, and scalp.  These areas may be covered in finer and more subtle scales that those in plaque psoriasis.

  •  Pustular Psoriasis

Pustular psoriasis is identified by white blisters encircled by red skin.  The skin typically becomes red first and then quickly breaks out in noninfectious pustules filled with white blood cells. It generally envelops a large area of skin and is sometimes accompanied by a temperature, chills, and harsh itching. The breakout may abate quickly but come back often.  Pustular psoriasis has a number of triggers.  These include pregnancy and medications such as systemic steroids. Breakouts may also begin after discontinuing the use of certain medications.  An example is strong topical steroid creams.

  • Erythrodermic Psoriasis

Erythodermic psoriasis is the least common form of psoriasis.  It results in inflamed skin, itching, and a painful rash that may peel and often envelope the entire body.  It is sometimes accompanied by chills and irregular body temperature.  It can be brought on by severe sunburn, discontinuing systemic treatment, or another form of psoriasis that is not well restrained. People with erythrodermic psoriasis should get medical attention as soon as possible. This is extremely important in order to avoid serious protein and fluid loss, swelling, infection, or pneumonia.  These dangerous issues can eventually require hospitalization.

 

Sources:

National Psoriasis Foundation

Webmd.com

Acne Prevention and Treatment

AcneVulgarisUSMIL (1)

 

Acne

Acne is well known as the bane of a teenager’s existence. But whether it is stress or genetics, some of us still get breakouts long past adolescence, and even into middle age! Here are some basic, yet effective acne-fighting recipes. No outlandish ingredients, no chemicals, no infomercials needed! Incorporate these easy-to-make recipes into your regular facials, and see the results!

Depending on your skin, you may find that some work better than others for your individual needs, so try them all at least once. Rotate the most effective remedies to ensure you do not over-expose your skin to certain ingredients, which may be too strong for daily use.

Considered the most severe type of acne, nodulocystic acne, or cystic acne, is painful and leaves permanent disfiguring scars on its victims. It is an inflamed breakout that develops on the face and other areas of the body that leaves behind large blemishes measuring up to several centimeters across. Cystic acne derives its name from the cyst that develops deep within the skin following infection. The cyst is filled with puss and locates itself under the swollen pustule.

Eight Preventive Methods

Acne is a fact of life for a lot of people, and not just teenagers.  While acne breakouts can be bothersome, there are things that people can do to help keep them to a minimum.  We have listed what we believe are 8 of the best ways that people can keep their acne to a minimum and even prevent breakouts.

Keep It Clean

While acne is a problem that starts below the skin’s surface, keeping acne-prone skin clean is essential. The reason is that the oils on the skin’s surface can clog pores and cause pimples to develop in those with skin already prone to breakouts. For this same reason, exfoliation is important as well. Exfoliation removes the dead skin on the surface. However it’s important to remember that acne is caused by inflammation in the skin, so it’s important to be gentle. Rough cleansing can make the inflammation, and the acne, worse.

Shopping for Cosmetics

Acne prone skin is sensitive skin and easily irritated by some cosmetics.  When shopping for cosmetics, check for non-comedogenic on the product label. This means that it is designed not to aggravate blackheads and clog pores.  Purchase oil-free products such as moisturizers and sunscreens.  They will also help keep skin clear.

Mobile Phones

I would like to share with you another issue that is, more often than not, over looked.   It is your mobile/cellphone that is constantly pressed against your ear and the side of your face. It is collecting oils and bacteria from the skin.  These phones get warm and encourage your skin pores to open up and consequently letting oil and bacteria to reach deeper in the skin. Clean your phone daily to prevent this from causing acne breakouts.  You can purchase wipes for electronics to keep your phone clean safely.

Hair and Chemicals

Try your best to keep hair products away from your face. These chemicals are intended to assure that your style is long lasting but can cause irritation on the forehead that could eventually lead to a breakout on acne prone skin.  This could affect the jaw, neck, and back area as well.  I would suggest that if you have acne prone skin that you avoid having bangs especially if your breakouts occur mostly on the forehead.

Smoking

Smoking can cause lasting problems in our bodies.  These can sometimes be life threatening.  It is also damaging to the skin.  This is caused by the chemicals that are in tobacco.  These chemicals inflict irritation and drying to the skin that brings on premature aging.  This can lead to severe wrinkling as we get older.  I would advise you to do your best to stop smoking if you have started and if you have not, don’t smoke.

Makeup at Night Time

Our bodies as well as our skin rejuvenate as we sleep.  There are many products on the market that are oil free and are not comedogenic.  These products may not cause or aggravate blackheads as we wear them during the daytime but can interfere with the rejuvenation of the skin during sleep.  They can irritate the skin and trap the oil and dirt that accumulates during the day causing clogged pores.  Make sure and remove your makeup before going to bed.  There are a number of products you can purchase that make this removal safe and easy.

Stress

Stress can trigger an inflammatory response in the body.  Acne is also an inflammatory response therefore stress may make the acne worse.  If you are acne prone, try thinking back to a stressful time for yourself and note whether or not you had a breakout during this time.  If you are anticipating a stressful time, you may consider adding salicylic acid or benzyl peroxide cleanser along with some oil free moisturizing to your regular skin care procedure.  This would help to prevent the breakout before it starts.

Hats

Hats can trap hair products, sweat, skin oils and cosmetic products against the forehead.  This can lead to breakouts. If you are acne prone and keep getting breakouts on the foreheads, I would suggest that you ditch the hat if you wear one.  If you constantly wear a hat you may be trading fashion for an unsightly and painful acne breakout.

Get more information on causes and prevention of acne from this video:

Sources:

  • Palo Alto Medical Foundation
  • KidsHealth.org
  • Prevention magazine
  • The 8 Best Home Remedies For Acne
  • Breaking Down the Different Types of Acne
  • How to Choose the Best Acne Scar Treatments
  • 10 Acne Myths: What Does or Doesn’t Cause Acne?
  • A Guide to Using Homeopathic Acne Treatment
  • Proactiv® – Official Site Limited Time Offer – Free Shipping! Try American’s #1 Acne Care System. www.proactiv.com
  • 10 Best Acne Treatments 2012′s Top 10 Acne Treatments Revealed! Be Acne Free Within 72 Hrs.
  • AcneCuresRevealed.net/Top-Ranked
  • Ways to Prevent Acne Prescription-Grade Acne Medicine. Blast out Acne w/ X Out™. See How! www.XOut.com

Watch for our next article on psoriasis

Cellulite Causes – The Possible Treatment

What is Cellulite

We all appreciate those cute dimples that show up in our cheeks when we smile. That is not the case with those dimples that show up in other parts of our bodies such as the thighs, buttocks, abdomen, and upper arms that is called cellulite.

Cellulite

Before and After

Those are just unsightly lumps under the skin that we strive to get rid of.   It is not a medical issue and you don’t have to be overweight to have cellulite. It is actually just normal fat under the skin. The lumpy look appears because the fat pushes against connecting tissue causing it to lump up.  The skin above it starts to take on a puckering look which most of us hate the look of.   Cellulite is not harmful but some would try anything to get rid of it including the author of this article.

It is a myth that only overweight people have cellulite. Thin people can have it too.  It is true that if you are overweight, losing some pounds could reduce the cellulite to some degree.  It is more common in women than men and if other women you are related to have it then chances are so will you.  I have listed below some of the conditions that seem to make cellulite more visible.

Possible Cellulite Causes

  • Poor eating habits (diet)
  • Dieting (Fads)
  • Slow metabolism
  • Lack of exercise
  • Changes in Hormones
  • Dehydration
  • Excess body fat
  • Skin density and color (Cellulite is less noticeable on darker skin)

Cellulite Treatment

Losing weight can reduce the amount of fat beneath the skin therefore reducing the lumps that cause the cellulite. If a person is already thin or at a desired weight, the loss of pounds could cause the skin to sag and become more unsightly.

Some tests show that there are ingredients related to caffeine that will actually shrink fat cells. These tests, however, have not been proven to be effective on the skin. One major pharmaceutical and consumer health company tested a cream with the ingredients of caffeine and retinol.  This test did show a reduction in the stomach, thighs, and upper arms when used twice daily for 12 weeks.  Retinol may help stimulate collagen production in the skin, making it thicker and more elastic. Thicker skin helps make cellulite less noticeable. Retinol may help stimulate collagen production in the skin, making it thicker and more elastic. Thicker skin helps make cellulite less noticeable.

Endermologie is a treatment for cellulite using rollers and suction to knead the skin, improving circulation but very pricey and there is no evidence of reduction in cellulite.  These treatments usually last for 10 to 45 mins, twice weekly and go on for several months. There is a  newer group of machines, such as the Acoustic Wave Therapy system, that uses high intensity sound waves.  They work by applying heat which is meant to thicken the skin and melt the fat underneath.   Acoustic waves are high pressure waves that aim to break up the septae, (connecting bands of tissue that pull the skin down) creating  cellulite dimples. This procedure can penetrate the fat cells, melting some of the fat inside the cells and leaving a smoother appearance on the surface.

Most of these methods require multiple treatments and can cost into the thousands of dollars depending on the method you choose and the number of treatments.  You are probably now asking yourself what improvement can you expect. Wanner says even using the best method of technology, “about 25% to 50% of people may see an improvement of 25% to 50%, which may diminish after a while.

The FDA has cleared a surgical treatment called Cellulaze. This is a laser that a cosmetic surgeon inserts under the skin. The surgeon  uses this side firing laser to burn away the septae bands that are pulling the skin down. It also cooks away fat, getting rid of bulges.  The company that makes this laser says this treatment also helps thin sagging skin on cellulite.  You can expect peak results in about 6 months and the cost could be between $7,000 and $8,000.  This study has been done on 50 patients who see about 65% satisfaction in cellulite reduction which lasts for a period of about 2 years.

Liposuction will eliminate cellulite; however it doesn’t do anything to prevent cellulite from coming back after surgery. This author does not recommend liposuction. There are many risks associated with liposuction and we suggest thoroughly researching this method before making any decisions. Liposuction is not meant to replace diet and exercise. It’s mainly for  individuals who are at their desired body weight but whose body fat is localized to one area. Areas most often undergoing liposuction are the belly, hips, buttocks and thighs.  This will give a person a slimmer figure but the weight will return unless maintained.