Wednesday, March 4, 2015

5 Solutions For Teenage Acne

 



Almost all teens deal with acne in one form or another. Hormonal changes that arise during puberty can elevate the body’s level of androgens, which cause the skin glands to become larger and produce excess amounts of sebum (skin oil). This overload of oil then clogs pores, and forms acne. Acne usually affects the face, neck, back, chest, rear, arms, legs and shoulders. Although acne isn't a serious health problem, it can cause permanent facial scars and affect the self-esteem of the sufferer.

Forms of Acne: 
Whiteheads: Raised white dots that are pores full of contaminants covered by a layer of skin.
Blackheads: Dark brown bumps that are pores impacted with bacteria, dead skin cells, dirt and oil, which have reacted with oxygen resulting in a blackish color.
Papules, pustules or nodules: Painful, hard lesions that appear red and swollen due to inflammation or infection of the tissue around the clogged follicle.
Cysts: Large, deep, and inflamed pus-filled pimples.


Thankfully there are ways to help control and even reduce acne. Here are a few lifestyle tips that will give you some insight to what might be triggering your acne breakouts and will help you to take control of your unruly complexion.



1. Eat Right

Teens who want to reduce their risk of acne breakouts, should definitely watch what they put into their mouths.  Researchers have found a connection between acne and diets packed with refined carbohydrates and sweets such as bread, candy, pasta, soda and juice. These foods cause your blood sugar to spike, unleashing a rush of hormones that stimulate oil production and make pore-clogging skin cells shed faster. When you develop cystic breakouts, it might be a sign that you're getting more dairy in your diet than your body can tolerate, says celebrity esthetician Renee Rouleau. In recent years, a series of studies has suggested that dairy products, especially milk, can cause breakouts in people already prone to acne. Researchers have theorized that naturally occurring hormones in milk stimulate the production of sebum and pore-clogging skin cells. If you struggle with hormonal acne, which tends to appear on the chin or along the jaw line, you might consider cutting out dairy as an experiment.

For more tips on what foods your eating that are causing acne breakouts, read “8 of the Worst Foods for Your Skin.”


2. Exercise Regularly

Whether you have a lot of acne or even the occasional zit, exercise may actually help control the issue. When you exercises you blood flow increases, allowing cell waste to be replaced with oxygen and nutrients. Pores are also unclogged during exercise through the production of sweat, and your stress level is lowered. All of these factors can equal healthy looking skin.

Keep in mind that some people actually experience an increase in acne after they workout. This is not caused by exercise but rather it’s the result of improper bodily care and hygiene practices. For a few tips to prevent a rise in acne after a workout read “5 Tips to Preventing Post Exercise Acne Breakouts.”


3. Sleep Well


Stress and lack of sleep have been closely related to acne breakouts due to hormonal imbalances in the body.  These factors can cause adrenal glands to go into overdrive to produce greater amounts of adrogens and cortisol. Higher levels of these hormones could result in an increase in acne problems.  Help balance your body with 7 or more hours of sleep every night and practicing relaxation techniques like stretching, yoga, and self-massage.


4. Observe Your Skin
 

When was the last time you washed your pillowcase? Do you use the same towel for your face that you use for your body or hands? Be aware of what is touching your skin. If you have pimples around your right cheek, see if that’s the side you hold your cell phone on. This could simply be a result of you cell depositing bacteria and foreign matter into your pores.

For more hints about things that touch your face that are causing acne breakouts read, “What’s Touching Your Skin?: 13 Tips to Prevent Acne Breakouts.”


5. Treat Acne

Step 1:   Wash your face once a day, twice a day for oily skin types, with a sulfur based acne face wash and warm water.  Sulfur has antibacterial properties that will fight off acne causing bacteria, while the warm water will loosen and dissolve unnecessary facial oils. For those who suffer from redness, alternating with a clay based face wash will tighten pores, while calming inflammation. Never scrub your face, as scrubbing may worsen acne flare ups by irritating the skin and stretching pores.

Sulfur based daily face wash for acne
Clay based daily facial mask for minimizing pores
and reducing skin irritation


Step 2:   Immediately after hopping out the shower, apply a clarifying toner that will balance your skin while fighting acne. Never let your skin rest, not even for a minute, without some type of “protection” on it. Neglecting your freshly washed skin will trigger its defense system, and cause it to produce excess amounts of oil. Because toners can potentially cause irritation, they are not recommended for sensitive skin types, who should move on to the next step in this regimen. If you suffer from post acne marks, such as dark spots, use a toner containing Hydroquinone, which will even out your skin tone as it safely fades unwanted pigmentation.


Balancing solution that for acne
With Hydroquinone for uneven skin tone and post acne marks


Step 3:   Use a medication that targets the source of your acne problems.
·      Benzoyl peroxide is said to be the most effective acne medication that one can get without a prescription. Benzoyl Peroxide helps kill bacteria imbedded within the skin, unclogs pores, and helps to heal pimples. This medication comes in different forms (wash, lotion, gel) and in strengths ranging from 2.25%-10%. It’s advised to start slowly when beginning your treatment with this medication, only using once a day or every other day.  After about two weeks, one can increase the dosage to 2 times a day if they have oily skin or are not seeing dramatic enough results.  Make sure to apply the medication to the entire face, as opposed to spot treatments, allowing it to continue to protect the skin from future breakouts.

With Benzoyl Peroxide to eliminate acne

·      Salicylic acid can also be acquired without a prescription and comes in many different forms and strengths. This medication dissolves hard contaminants harboring in the pores, and helps shed the top layer of skin to prevent future dead skin cell build up. "It usually takes 4 to 8 weeks to notice a substantial improvement," says Julie Danna, MD, a pediatric dermatologist at Ochsner Health Center in Metairie, La.

Next Step
If your acne is still not improving after using over-the-counter products for a couple of months, you should consider seeing a dermatologist who will most likely prescribe a stronger treatment to target your skincare needs.

·       Retinoids can also be attained without a prescription, but higher dosages may be prescribed by doctors. This derivative of vitamin A is most known for it’s anti-aging benefits, but not widely known to the general public, Retinol also helps with acne by unclogging pores and turning over old skin cells to new ones. Retinol should always be paired with a product containing Vitamin C, as it will preserve the medication while it works to renew your skin. 

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With Retinol to unclog and minimize pores

·       Antibiotics which fight off acne-causing bacteria come as a cream, lotion, gel or pill. Your doctor may prescribe pills or medicine you put on your skin if they believe that an antibiotic is the way to go.

·       Hormone blockers for Women (oral contraceptives, cyproterone acetate, spironolactone) can be very effective in controlling acne symptoms.  This treatment is refereed to as Anti-androgen therapy, because the medication blocks the reception and production of androgens, which causes the body to produce skin oils. This treat is not for men as it counteracts the effects of testosterone.

·       Isotretinoin (Accutane, Amnesteem, Sotret, and Claravis) is a very strong medication that comes in a pill form and is only used for severe types of acne that hasn’t responded to all prior treatments. Because of the severity of this medicine it should always be taken under regular doctor supervision. Although this drug is said to be the closest cure to acne, because it actually shrinks the oil glands, causing your skin to produce less oil, it has also been know to cause birth defects/fatalities, depression, and add to premature signs of aging. Doctors usually require patients who take this medication to do a few blood tests, and sign a consent form before taking this drug


Step 4:   Moisturize on a daily basis.

·      Daytime: A moisturizing broadband sunscreen of SPF 15 or higher, should be applied before you leave the house and then through out the day. The top reason to use sunscreen is because it will protect your skin against the signs of aging. We recognize that you are a teen and although aging is the last thing on your list of target skin issues, believe us when we say that your future self will definitely thank you. Be sure to use a "noncomedogenic" or "nonacnegenic" sunscreen, as it will not clog pores. For oily skin types, opt for a sunscreen that is specially designed to help control oil production throughout the day.

·      Nighttime: Applying a moisturizer, before you hit the pillow, is vital for keeping your skin healthy. Replenish your skin with essential nutrients like Vitamins A, C, and E, with a repairing moisturizer. Keep in mind that, the main reason your skin might be producing excessive amounts of oil is because it is trying to protect it’s self.  Never dry out your skin, it needs nutrient rich moisture and when you keep it moisturized, the skins defense system is less likely to react.

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Containing Vitamin A, C, and E to repair skin while you sleep.


Extra Step:   Macro Exfoliation should be done once a week and placed before Step 1. Be sure to give your face a quick wash to remove bacteria, dirt and oils before you exfoliate, as to not contaminate your freshly exposed pores. Young men, who shave, should consider that as exfoliating half of their face and always do it after a quick wash, then follow it with Step 1. Macro Exfoliation is not recommended for those with sensitive skin.

For tips on reducing razor bumps when shaving read “10 Steps to Preventing Razor Bumps.”

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5 Tips to Preventing Post Exercise Acne Breakouts




Exercise is essential to healthy looking skin. It increases blood circulation and brings nutrients to our skin’s surface.  Unfortunately, some people find that their acne breakouts can worsen after a good workout.  This is not a result of the workout it’s self, but rather of poor hygiene practices. Here are a few tips to prevent post acne breakouts, and help control overall acne symptoms.





1.     Makeup: Try not to wear any makeup when working out because it could potentially seep into your pores after or during an intensive workout, making your acne worse and pores bigger. Makeup also has a tendency to pack into fine lines in the skin, accentuating wrinkles and aging your appearance.



2.     Sunscreen: Wearing sunscreen while exercising outdoors is smart, as it prevents premature signs of aging and protects against being over exposed to the sun, which can trigger acne.  Before heading out for a jog apply a "noncomedogenic" or "nonacnegenic" broadband sunscreen of SPF 15 or higher. Be sure that your products do not clog pores, as that will increase an acne problem.



3.     Clothing: For those prone to body acne, avoid wearing synthetic fabrics like lycra and nylon because they tend to trap heat and moisture against the skin, increasing the chances of bacteria production. Always wear lightweight, natural fabrics, like cotton, which will allow your skin to breathe. If you are able to get your heads on synthetic fabrics that wick moisture away from the body, those might even be a better option for your specific situation.



4.     Exercise Equipment: When using or wearing exercise gear, there are 2 things to be aware of. The first is friction. Make sure that your swimming or bike suites are not rubbing against the skin, and if you wear a helmet make sure it is snug. If you are able to line your helmet with a washable fabric, like a t-shirt this would be ideal, as it would create a clean protective barrier between you and the lingering bacteria resting inside the helmet. Secondly, be aware of surfaces harboring bacteria. Wear protective barriers that will not allow used equipment to touch your skin. Wash your exercise clothes after using them, and make sure that you clean your gear before and after your workouts.



5.     Showering: After a good workout, you should have a nice layer of sweat that encompasses your body.  This moisture barrier is a good thing, but should be dealt with immediately in order to prevent acne breakouts. Get out of your stinky wet clothes, because sweat might aggravate acne and cause skin irritation. As a good rule of thumb, take a shower immediately after your rigorous workout with a medicated face wash to get your skin feeling fresh and clean.  And as always, remember to pat your face dry with a clean towel.




What's Touching Your Skin?: 13 Tips to Prevent Acne Breakouts



Acne is bad enough without our help. Be aware of what’s touching your skin that is triggering your breakouts. Here are a few tips that can help you control the avoidable symptoms of acne.





1.     Makeup: Although makeup will act as a temporary cover up for acne, it’s not very good for your skin. Makeup can trigger acne by impacting pores with foreign matter. In addition, it make can increase the signs of aging in adults. Choose brands that offer "noncomedogenic" or "nonacnegenic" makeup that will not clog pores. Don't wear any makeup when working out.






2.     Sunscreen: Applying sunscreen throughout the day will prevent premature signs of aging and protect against being over exposed to the sun, which can trigger acne.  But the wrong selection of sunscreen can also cause acne by filling your pores with contaminants and oils. Before heading out for the day apply a "noncomedogenic" or "nonacnegenic" broadband sunscreen of SPF 15 or higher. This type of sunscreen will not clog pores. Because sunscreen is recommended to be reapplied every 2 hours to maintain optimum coverage, we suggest applying a cream SPF broadband spectrum sunscreen in the morning then using a powder sunscreen throughout the day. This will protect your skin throughout the day, but wont leave you with a greasy feeling at the end of the day. 






3.     Clothing: For those prone to body acne, avoid wearing synthetic fabrics like lycra and nylon. These types of fabrics tend to trap heat and moisture against the skin, increasing the chances of bacteria production. Always wear lightweight, natural fabrics, like cotton, which will allow your skin to breathe. If you are able to get your heads on synthetic fabrics that wick moisture away from the body, those might even be a better option in certain situation.






4.     Exercise Equipment: When using or wearing exercise gear, there are 2 things to be aware of. The first is friction. Make sure that your swimming or bike suites are not rubbing against the skin, and if you wear a helmet make sure it is snug. Lining your helmet with a washable fabric, like a t-shirt, is ideal as it would create a clean protective barrier between you and the lingering bacteria resting inside the helmet. Secondly, be aware of surfaces harboring bacteria. Wear protective barriers that will not allow used equipment to touch your skin. Wash your exercise clothes after using them, and make sure that you clean your gear before and after your workouts.







5.     Cell Phone: They are one of the most bacteria infested items you own. Remember to keep it off your beautiful face at all costs. Hold your cell at an angle so that it only touches your ear but not your cheek to prevent the transfer of infectious bacteria from your phone to your face.







6.     Food: Food is meant to go in our mouths but sometimes it gets on our face too. After eating, remove oils and food particles from your face by washing around your mouth with soap and water.







7.     Pillow Case: When was the last time you washed your pillowcase? Over time it collects bacteria, oils, and little particles that can get into your pores. Change or wash your pillowcase once a week to prevent the grime from last week getting on your skin. Between washes, flip and turn the pillowcase inside out so that a different surface is touching your resting head every night.







8.     Hands: What have your hands touched and why are they touching your face? Touching your face with your hands, is just as bad as putting your face directly on everything your hands have touched. Wash your hands throughout the day to get off any dirt, germs, and viruses that you may have unknowingly picked up. And refrain from touching your face with them as much as possible.







9.     Sweat Rag / Towel: During the hot summer season, you may carry your sweat rag around with you everywhere. You also wipe yourself down with a bath towel after every bath. These useful cloths can harbor millions of bacteria and oils. Make sure the cloths you wipe yourself down with are clean by changing them - once a week for a bath towel and once a day for a sweat rag. In the bathroom, have a separate towel reserved only for your face so that you don’t get bacteria and oils from your body or hands on your freshly washed face.







10. Hair / Hair Products: Your hair looks amazing and everyone knows it, but there are little things that can help your skin look just as good. Make sure your bangs are always away from your forehead so that the natural hair oils and hair product don’t deposit themselves onto your face. After a night out with the friends, wash out the product that you put in your hair before you go to sleep. This will prevent grime from your hair product from being transferred from your pillowcase to your face.






11. Cooking: Cooking can be therapeutic and necessary. Unfortunately it can also put your face in contact with oil and foreign matter. Be sure to wash your face well after you cook to ensure that all the oils that have been deposited onto your skin will not keep up shop in your pores.







12. Loofah: This handy bath tool can be great for exfoliation and thoroughly cleaning your body but it can also hold millions of acne causing bacteria. Prevent this by storing your loofah in a dry space. Also, change your loofah every 2 months and give it a quick rinse with bleach every once in a while to kill lingering bacteria.







13. Razor: Razor burn can be a trigger for acne breakouts. Read “10 Steps to Preventing Razor Bumps” for information on how to prevent skin irritation caused by razors.



Final Tip:
Look at your skin and figure out where most of the breakouts are happening. Take note of everything that touches those areas. If what is touching your skin causes friction, harbors bacteria, or contains oils, then take actions to stop it from touching those problem areas. Now, this might be difficult and require a lot of thought, because it will be adding a new habit into the way you behave, but the results will be worth it.

Leaked, Un-Retouched Beyoncé Photos



Outakes of Beyoncé’s ads for L’Oreal’s Feria and Infallible have recently been taken down from a popular fan page called The Beyoncé World. Although her fans have been overtly vocal about the revealing pictures, the super star has yet to comment. The website mentioned that due to the “horrible” posts regarding the photos on the website, they decided to taken them down as not to cause any “drama” among fans. They wrapped up their statement with: “ We were just posting the photos to share the fact that our queen is naturally beautiful, at the same time she is just a regular woman.”

These photos just go to show that flawed skin affects everyone, no matter how much money they might have.  This truly helps to shine a little perspective on how hard we work on our own complexion, and how much money we spend to be “beautiful.” The reality is, that everyone post-puberty has facial flaws, and that’s just a part of being human. And that’s okay. What a relief. Even Beyoncé, an A list celebrity, needs a bit of retouching every now and then. But don’t we all.












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Visit T.J.'s profile on Pinterest.

 

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Kismet Diner: A Love Story





Sometimes you have to listen with your heart.

Laura works at the Kismet Diner. She dreams of being a singer, but for the moment she's okay to wait tables. One Saturday night, she notices a customer she hasn't seen before...



When you want to be ready to shine. The REDEFINE Regimen will get you there.

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ACUTE CARE smooths expression lines with proprietary Liquid Cone Technology that melts line-defying peptides and hyaluronic acid directly into the wrinkle for a more youthful appearance.