Vitamin D deficiencies seem to be a big debate right now. Humans are not getting enough nutrition, rest, or sunlight these days. This does not mean you should rush to the tanning bed for your daily dose of Vitamin D, or lay out in the sun lathered in baby oil either. You can take a Vitamin D supplement and eat the right foods and this will provide you with the recommended daily dose.
If a person is not getting enough Vitamin D it may lead to weak muscles and bones, dental decay, lack of energy, nervousness, or trouble sleeping. While some of these symptoms sound like a normal day for a lot of us, it is important to be properly diagnosed and treated if you have any kind of vitamin deficiency.
The top foods that contain Vitamin D are: milk, cod liver oil, salmon, tuna, sardines, egg yolks, fortified cereals, and beef liver. These foods may be hard to fit into a normal day, especially if you are lactose intolerant or a vegetarian. You can supplement your dose of D by taking a vitamin. There are a lot of different kinds of vitamins on the market that are vegetarian, vegan, gluten free, and that do not contain milk.
The suggested dose of Vitamin D is 400 IU per day. For example a whole egg would provide 20 IU where 3.5 oz of salmon provides 360IU. The National Osteoporosis Foundation recommends a daily intake of 800 to 1,000 IU per day for adults over the age of 50. It is important not to overdose on Vitamin D, as it can be toxic to your body in large amounts.
Vitamin D plays a vital role when used in skin care. Vitamin D promotes cell growth and can help prevent pre mature aging of the skin and repair damage to the skin’s structure. Vitamin D will also boost your immune system, maintain a healthy brain function, and has been linked to maintaining a healthy body weight.
If you are going to be in the sun to obtain your Vitamin D, please please please wear your sunscreen!
Before you decide to switch regimens to address breakouts for the 100th time, read this!
So you just started a regimen a week or two ago that your esthetician raved about and now you are breaking out more than ever? Believe it or not, this is not the time to change routines.
It is crucial to understand how your skin functions and how certain ingredients influence its behavior so you know what to expect when starting a new regimen.
Normally, your skin regenerates itself every 28-50 days depending on age and skin health. You shed skin cells daily, but the amount is so minute that you rarely see it happening. This is called natural exfoliation. Acne regimens rely on products that will enhance this process (along with anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory ingredients).
When starting a new acne regimen, your skin goes through an accelerated exfoliation and renewal process. This allows for breakouts to show up much more quickly than they would have otherwise. The products are not creating new breakouts, but rather unveiling them at a sooner date. You would have seen the same blemishes surface weeks down the road, but since your skin function has been sped up you are seeing 5-6 weeks worth of breakouts in one or two weeks. This amazing and horrifying process is commonly referred to as “purging”.
This can definitely be alarming, but it is very important to adhere to the regimen suggested to you so you can get through this period, and you will get through it. The average time frame is 7-10 days, but it is not uncommon for it to stretch to 2-4 weeks. It all depends on the severity of acne you were experiencing and how quickly you can advance your regimen. Sensitive skin has to advance more slowly so the “purging” period may be a bit longer than tolerant skin which can increase the frequency of product usage more quickly. This breakout period can be minimized by using products with anti-bacterial properties such as benzoyl peroxide or topical antibiotics from your derm. We suggest sticking to a regimen for 6- 8 weeks and sometimes longer before deciding to switch, unless you are have a reaction (not skin purging). Keep in mind that not all acne will clear in 8 weeks, but you will definitely get a sense of the products and if you will be able to achieve better results over time.
The bottom line is to stick it out and you will see clearer, more refined healthy skin.
The key players in this acclimation process are:
Alpha and Beta Hydroxy Acids (glycolic, lactic, salicylic, malic, mandelic acids) - Hydroxy acids have the ability to break down corneodemosomes on the surface of the skin. These are what hold the dead skin cells together. Think of the mortar on a brick wall. Once the corneodesmosomes are dissolved, the dead skin cells are ready to fall off. Using a hydroxy acid will speed up the rate that the cells are shed which means your skin has to make new skin cells to fill their place. When these new cells die, they are pushed to the surface for their turn to be shed. Any debris or microcomedones (pimples) rise to the surface too, which is why it seems like the product is making you break out. When using these ingredients for acne, daily is usually best.
Retinol – Retinol works from the inside out, which is opposite of a hydroxy acid. This ingredient stimulates cell renewal first, which then forces your skin to shed the dead skin cells from the top layer. This is a very potent ingredient and flaking and peeling is a common reaction because it has the ability to speed up the production of new skin cells so fast that you can visibly see the shedding of the old skin cells, which is usually invisible. This is generally not a desirable outcome, so moderation is the key with retinol. Use maybe 2-3 times a week.
Ask a professional before starting a regimen with either of these active ingredients.
A lot of the time people think “if some is good, more is better.” But is this really true? Generally speaking, if you are using good, quality skin care products, a little bit goes a long way. If you are using too much product, you might just be washing away money.
For moisturizers, a pea sized to a dime sized amount is usually all that you will need. You want to make sure the product covers the entire area you are trying to treat, but not so much that there is some left visible on the skin. Make sure your skin is slightly damp when you apply a moisturizer too so it can spread better, absorb quicker and you will use less product. Don’t forget your neck and décolleté!
On the other hand, sunscreens are like medicine. In order for sunscreen to be active, the right amount needs to be used. The average-sized person needs to use 1oz of product per application for the entire body. 1oz is about the size of a shot glass. For just the face, neck and décolleté you need approximately a teaspoon full to get the proper coverage. Sunscreen is needed every day, including the winter months.
Customers frequently contact us with many questions about their skin care and hair care products. Here are some of the top questions we receive on a regular basis. Hopefully the answers will be helpful to you!
1. How long do the products that we purchase last?
•Most products have a 2-3 year shelf life unopened.
•Once opened most products, depending on ingredients can last 3-9 months.
2. When do products expire?
•Each product depending on brand and ingredients has a different expiration date. Unfortunately there is no universal labeling system for cosmetics that allow you to definitely tell what serial numbers on the packaging means. The exception would be sunscreen (SPF). The Food & Drug administration (F.D.A.) requires sunscreens to have a printed expiration date on the packaging. Using sunscreens after this expiration date will compromise your skin’s protection to UVA & UVB rays and make you more susceptible to sunburns and skin cell damage.
3. When does product efficacy (effectiveness) begin to diminish?
•Once opened most products, depending on ingredients can last 3-9 months.
•The longer you continue to use the product after that time period the less effective it will be in providing the results you desire.
•Many U.S. manufacturers are beginning to put the European labeling on their products that have a picture of a jar or packaging with a number and an “M” (i.e. 12M) meaning the product has a 12 month shelf life AFTER the product has been opened.
4. Is my product compromised by being exposed to heat or cold?
•All products must pass a heat/cool and freeze/thaw test in order to make it to the market. All products must be tested to ensure the active ingredients and overall composition has not been compromised. Although not recommended, products are tested and can be exposed to extreme heat or cold for extended periods of time but cannot last if the extreme temperatures are constant and repeated.
•Normal exposure to heat or cold while in shipping from the SkinStore warehouse to your delivery location should not affect your product. If your product has been sitting outside in elevated levels of hot or cold weather, bring your product inside and allow it to come to room temperature (70-75 degrees Fahrenheit) before using it. If your product has separated, the active ingredients are not compromised; you should be able to stir the product (i.e. skin cream) until the correct consistency is achieved.
5. Where do you get your products from?
•All of SkinStore’s products come directly from the brand manufacturer. We do not purchase any products that do not come from the manufacturer.
6. Where do you store the products SkinStore sells?
•SkinStore receives all of the products directly from the manufacturer and we store all of the products in a climate controlled warehouse in the United States.
7. My product color varies from my last order, is it still okay to use?
•Some products, especially those with a higher level of natural ingredients or L-Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C) can have varying color from batch to batch depending on where and when the ingredients were harvested from.
•L-Ascorbic Acid begins to oxidize and darken as soon as it is exposed to oxygen. This is a natural process and does not mean your product has been compromised or has expired.
8. How should I store my product?
•Store your product in a cool, dry, dark place, away from heat, moisture and sunlight.
9. I ordered a product that comes out of a pump. I pump the container and nothing comes out. What’s wrong?
•This is one of our most frequently asked questions regarding product packaging. Nearly all of the products that come in a pump dispenser, regardless of brand, will have a certain amount of air in the package. Sometimes an air bubble can get stuck in the between the product and the dispenser. Firmly tapping the bottom of the dispenser bottle several times and then rapidly pumping can help to get the air out of the packaging and release the product. Click here to learn more about air pump issues.
10. Why don’t my products have the same packaging and seals as when I purchased them at the retail store?
•In an effort to save packaging for environmental reasons and passing those savings on to the consumer, some of the products shipped to SkinStore do not have the same packaging and seals that you would find at a retail location. All of our items are stored in our climate controlled warehouse and shipped directly to you with no retail setting where the product can be tampered with.
As always, if you have questions about a product you are welcome to contact us and we will be happy to help you!
Dermatitis appears in many forms- some of which can be a bit difficult to decode. Is it a rash? Hives? Simple irritation? Here is my guide to help decipher different types of dermatitis.
Atopic dermatitis is also known as eczema and is a chronic inflammatory skin condition that can occur anywhere on the body but is mostly predominant on the neck, inner arms, or backs of knees. Atopic dermatitis flares up occasionally and may have dormant states where it’s nearly invisible. The cause of this skin disorder is unknown but is related to stress, asthma and immune system dysfunction. Atopic dermatitis can be extremely itchy and appears red and flaky. Persons affected by this skin disorder should not use harsh soaps or cleansers, can use hydrocortisone creams to soothe the area, and use healing ointments to promote skin repair.
Allergic Contact Dermatitis
Allergic contact dermatitis is the type of dermatitis caused by an allergen. Allergens can include perfume, cosmetics, hair color, weeds such as poison oak or poison ivy, metals, rubber and other synthetics. This type of dermatitis can occur anywhere on the body, depending on the contact with the allergen. The irritation resolves in two to three weeks. Irritation can be alleviated with the use of soothing topical ointments.
Irritant Contact Dermatitis
Similar to allergic contact dermatitis, irritant contact dermatitis is caused by synthetic irritants such as soap, detergents/fabric softeners or other synthetics. Irritant contact dermatitis is characterized by red, itchy, dry patches which bear a resemblance to a burn. This type of dermatitis resolves on its own within two to three weeks. Irritation can be alleviated with the use of soothing topical ointments.
Perioral dermatitis occurs on the face and usually affects the areas around the mouth and chin. Perioral dermatitis may have a rosacea-like look and is characterized by red bumps, itchy skin, flaky skin and pus-filled bumps. To treat perioral dermatitis a gentle antibacterial wash and soothing ointment may be used. Acne medication may be used on the bumps as well. There is no known cause of perioral dermatitis but irritants such as harsh cleansers, detergents, make-up, or fluoride products may be the culprit.
One of the most common forms of dermatitis, seborrheic dermatitis occurs on oily areas of the body such as the face, upper chest, and back. It can also appear on the scalp as dandruff and in infants as cradle cap. Seborrheic dermatitis is characterized by greasy flakes, itchy skin, redness and inflammation. Seborrheic dermatitis can be treated with medicated shampoos that contain coal tar, and with anti-inflammatory topical preparations, soothing ointments and hydrocortisone cream.
Do you have a skincare question for our SkinStore.com estheticians? Email us now.
Sometimes when we get too much sun or have a hormonal imbalance, we get something called hyperpigmentation which is when our melanocytes get kicked into overdrive and they leave brown marks behind such as freckles, age spots, dark marks, etc. Vitiligo is the complete opposite. Vitiligo occurs when melanocytes no longer produce pigment, therefore they leave white splotches behind on the skin. Usually Vitiligo is prominent on the face, hands and wrists. The patches of depigmentation usually start out small, but they often enlarge and change shape over time. Vitiligo can affect all races, but it more noticeable in those with darker skin tones. Unfortunately there is no cure for Vitiligo, but there are products out there that can help cover the unpigmented spots. Dermablend Cosmetics and Exuviance Coverblend products specialize in covering up imperfections such as scarring, uneven pigmentation, birth marks and rosacea.
What is Matrixyl 3000? Matrixyl 3000 is a combination of two peptides palmitoyl oligopeptide and palmitoyl tetrapeptide-7. This is an advanced formulation of the early edition of Matrixyl. These peptides are believed to stimulate collagen production by approximately 117% and also increase the hyaluronic acid production in your skin. The peptides stimulate the skin to reduce wrinkles and will also increase firmness in the skin. It is also believed that Matrixyl 3000 is less irritating on the skin than retinol or vitamin C. Even the most sensitive skin types can use this peptide, as it does not cause inflammation.
A combination of the palmitoyl oligopeptide and palmitoyl tetrapeptide-7, will provide greater benefits then versus when used alone. Together, they increase collagen production, reduce wrinkle depth and density. There has also been reports of an overall improved tone and texture of the skin. Matrixyl 3000 is said to firm the skin by reversing and preventing glycation damage to your skin. Glycation occurs when glucose and protein link together and cause the skin to stiffen resulting in dramatic decreases in collagen and elastin within the skin. This ingredient is a skin saver because it slows down the skin’s natural aging process, by promoting healthy skin from the inside out.
Here are some featured products on SkinStore.com that contain Matrixyl 3000:
In a world where skin care products are so specialized, it can be a bit confusing knowing what to look for and which ones will work best for you. Not to fear, your answer is here! Half the battle is knowing what skin type you have. To make it simple, we’ll discuss the three most common types.
Dry skin is generally characterized by smaller pores on and around the nose and forehead. This type of skin needs the most moisture. Under moisturized, dry skin can experience some oiliness when it needs hydration. Overly dry skin will work harder to produce the oil it craves, once properly hydrated, the oil subsides. Rough patches and flakiness can be exfoliated away with a scrub or peel. Extremely dry or inflamed skin can be calmed with products containing soothing ingredients such as chamomile.
What to look for: Creams rich in oils, such as Jojoba and Avocado, Glycerin, Lanolin and Shea Butter.
What to avoid: AHA’s and BHA’s with high concentrations. Acids typically make the skin drier.
The most common type of skin is combination. Skin that is combination will have medium to large pores on the nose, cheeks, forehead and chin. This skin tends to see some oil in the T-zone and is drier on the cheeks. Balancing the combo type can be tricky. Sometimes using two types of products can be most effective. Such as using dry skin products on the cheeks and products for oily skin on the forehead, nose and chin. When unbalanced, you will see congestion, black or whiteheads and occasional breakouts.
What to look for: Gentle cleansers, oil-free hydrators, spot treatments, balancing products.
What to avoid: Super-moisturizing oils, soap–based cleansers, waxes that can clog skin, Alcohols.
Need a pick me up? Jurlique’s Rosewater Balancing Mist will not only balance your skin with the scent of fresh roses. It will also set mineral make-up! Can be used just in the morning or all day as a refresher.
H2O Plus Face Oasis Cleansing Water is an ultra-foaming, oil free, liquid cleanser that will work wonderfully with a cleansing brush to help balance out combination skin.
Oily skin tends to have larger pores throughout the T-Zone and cheeks. It’s most common for this type to be blemish-prone, however all types can experience pore congestion such as black or whiteheads and breakouts. Controlling oil and acne are the main concerns for oily skin. Moisturizers and foundations with a matte finish will help to keep shine at bay. Acids will help exfoliate, heal blemishes and kill bacteria. Keep in mind, over-use of acids can strip the skin making it too dry resulting in an over-production of oil to compensate which can create more breakouts. Over time, the use of oil-free moisturizer will help balance hyper-active oil glands and bring skin back to manageability. Using an enzyme exfoliant 2-3 times a week is also an effective way to keep skin cells turning over and clear acne.
What to look for: Salicylic Acid (BHA). gel formulations, Benzoyl Peroxide, Glycolic Acid (AHA), and matte finish products.
What to avoid: Scrubs with beads than can infect and spread acne bacteria, stripping the skin with too much acid.
Have oily skin that needs help with anti-aging as well as clearing acne? Suki Balancing Day Lotion boosts collagen synthesis, and calms inflammation. It’s a multi-tasking, age fighting moisturizer.
Elemis Papaya Enzyme Peel is a peel that will help with acne scarring, fine lines and moisture. Pineapple and Papaya enzymes are natural exfoliants that will help smooth your skin without causing infection to existing acne.
Gel cleansers are ideal for oily skin. Peter Thomas Roth Anti-Aging Cleansing Gel is going to brighten, clarify and exfoliate all in one! Address fine lines and wrinkles while you do a deep pore cleanse and wash away dirt make-up and impurities.
Stretch marks appear when the skin has been stretched to the point of breaking down. When the skin becomes weak and the support structure begins to separate, the result is grooved and discolored skin. Collagen is normally damaged at the dermis level and a scar or stretch mark is left behind. The skin will normally have a red or purplish color at first which over time will fade out to have a silver or white appearance. Common causes are pregnancy, rapid growth and/or hormones.
Over the counter products will help to reduce the appearance of stretch marks. They normally do not entirely go away. Stretch mark creams will help to fade the discoloration of the scar and some will help to stimulate collagen reproduction.
Keratosis Pilaris (ker-uh-TO-sis pil-AIR-is) or KP is a very common skin condition that mainly occurs on the back and outer sides of the upper arms, however, it can occur on other parts of the body such as the thighs, cheeks, back and/or buttocks. This skin condition affects 50% of the entire world’s population, most commonly found in adolescents.
KP causes small, acne-like bumps that are painless and normally have a reddish coloring. KP has also been referred to as “chicken skin” or “permanent goose bumps”. Though this skin condition is not so attractive, it is harmless. KP is normally worse in the winter months when the climate is drier. It has also been noted that KP may worsen during pregnancy or after childbirth.
Though treatment is not medically necessary, most people seek treatment for cosmetic reasons. The most common treatments to lessen the appearance of KP are exfoliators and moisturizers that are targeted to hydrate dry skin types. Some common ingredients and products that help to treat KP are Lactic Acid, Urea, Vitamin A treatments, microdermabrasion products, Salicylic Acid and Glycolic acid. Since KP is a chronic condition, treatments are recommended to be done continuously.