How Sunlight Ages Skin

Take a look at a long-haul trucker sometime, a guy who's been driving for decades. Look closely at his face. One side will have more wrinkles than the other. Guess which one?The left side, the side of his face most exposed to the open window. Do you know why it has more wrinkles? Because it absorbs more direct sunlight than the right side of his face that's shaded inside the truck cab.

Look at the face of a long-haul trucker from a country like Great Britain, where people drive on the left side of the road. The right side of his face has more wrinkles because that's the side that faces the open window.

We're not talking lying in the sun here. We're not talking sunburn. We're talking chronic, long-term exposure to micro-doses of ultraviolet light that never overtly damages the skin, but over the years causes a collection of micro-scars that leaves a telling impression: wrinkles.

The epidermis, the outer layer of skin, "is as thin as a sheet of paper," says John J. Voorhees, M.D., chairman of dermatology at the University of Michigan Medical School. "Ninety percent of the mass of the skin is collagen," a large protein composed of three intertwined chains of amino acids that contributes to the form, function and strength of the skin. That also makes collagen the principal recipient of ultraviolet light damage.

But the pathway to aged skin is not straightforward. Sunlight itself does little direct damage to the collagen protein. A growing body of research shows, instead, that ultraviolet light turns genes "on" and "off"--and which genes get turned on can make all the difference.

Normal skin maintains a dynamic collagen exchange. A common type of skin cell called a fibroblast exudes new layers of collagen when collagen genes are turned on. When collagen is damaged, skin cells produce enzymes that digest and liquefy the large collagen proteins into gelatin for disposal.

Voorhees' group discovered a complex genetic pathway through which sunlight can suppress collagen production by turning off the collagen-producing genes. At the same time sunlight activates collagen digestion by stimulating production of the destructive enzymes.

Damaged skin results. The skin now carries a wound, and it needs to heal. "Anytime you cut yourself more than superficially, there is always a little bit of a scar," Voorhees says. "Our claim is that wound healing is never perfect. It could be 99.9 percent perfect, but never perfect. And that 99.9 percent [healing after sun damage] is going to lead to the slightest imperfection that is not visible to the human eye, but after thousands of these over a lifetime, the micro-scars become macro-scars. This is the UV-induced aging we call photo-aging, and it is piled on top of natural aging that has nothing to do with the sun."

Prematurely wrinkled skin results. Although FDA has approved retinoic acid to treat chronic photo-aging, prevention remains the more effective approach.

Here's the really tricky part: Most of the genetic changes and resulting photo-aging appear to come from so-called UVA, the wavelengths of ultraviolet light in the A band of the spectrum. Most sunscreens currently on the market provide excellent protection against UVB, but not all provide equally good protection against UVA. "If you put on gobs of sunscreen, it blocks" the damage, Voorhees says. "But if you don't use much, it does not block [the damage] at all."

Moreover, sunlight turns on the genetic destruction quickly, but it also stops quickly when you get out of the sun. The level of collagen production is completely back to normal in two days.

"The average person thinks, 'I didn't get pink so I have no photo-aging,'" Voorhees says. "Our data suggest that is not true. You are going to be getting the photo-aged [signals that turn genes on and off] and develop the micro-scars without getting any pinkness at all. You can get photo-aged damage long before you get pink or sunburned."

Safe Sunning

The basic advice about protecting yourself from the harmful effects of the sun remains sound, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. The department continues efforts, launched in 1998 with its "Choose Your Cover" public education campaign, to help all Americans, but especially the young, prevent skin disorders associated with excessive exposure to the sun.

The recommendation is simple: To prevent premature aging, sun damage, and skin cancer, you need to protect yourself and your family from the harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays of the sun. And sunscreen alone will not protect you. You need to use a total program to reduce the sun's harmful effects, including:

* Lavishly apply a sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 15 and reapply it every two hours according to the directions on the label.
* Reapply sunscreen as needed after swimming, sweating or towel drying. And use sunscreen even on cloudy days.
* Avoid the sun during the middle of the day, especially between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., when the atmosphere absorbs less of the harmful UV rays of sunlight than earlier or later in the day.
* If you have to be out in the midday sun, avoid long periods of direct sun exposure. Stay in the shade.
* Wear a wide-brimmed hat, protective clothing, and sunglasses.
* Never leave children exposed to the sun without adequate protection. Because of the long time it takes for cancer to develop, studies suggest that over-exposure early in life may lead to skin cancers later in life.

Although industry studies show that consumer use of sunscreen products continues to improve--up 13 percent in 1999--the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) says that consumers still do not apply the correct amounts of sunscreen to achieve the full benefit.

A study sponsored by Seventeen Magazine, Beiersdorf Inc.'s Nivea brand, and the AAD found an increase in the use of sunscreen by teens, but also found problems: Eighty-eight percent of teens spend a significant amount of time in the sun, but only 72 percent say they use sunscreen at least some of the time. Only about 40 percent of the teens say they use sunscreen often or all of the time. Young women use sunscreen more than young men (46.2 percent compared to 30.5 percent), and the reasons given for not using it include the belief that they never burn (30 percent), inconvenience (17 percent), and the desire for a dark tan (6 percent).

The difficulty, of course, is that teenagers won't see the effects of sun damage until they reach their 40s and 50s or later. By then, however, the damage already is done.

The questions surrounding sunscreen and labeling, which may have less to do with science and more to do with motivating human behavior, may prove to be the thorniest of all. Everyone agrees on the goal: Create a simple label that consumers can easily understand.

In addition to recommending the SPF limit on labels, FDA has proposed further label changes to help clarify the risks and benefits of sunscreen use and how to use the products properly. For example, FDA wants the label to avoid unsupported, misleading or confusing terms such as "sunblock," "waterproof," "all-day protection" and "visible and/or infrared light protection." And when the label says the product is "water resistant," or "very water resistant," it must mean that the product provides the stated SPF level after water resistance testing for a specified length of time. FDA and the industry also are wrestling with what it means to claim that a sunscreen is "broad-spectrum," that is, protective against both UVA and UVB.

Complexity is the problem because consumers want simplicity. Industry already has conducted studies that test the effectiveness of different ways to present information on the label. For example, Schering-Plough Health Care Products of Berkeley Heights, N.J., tested a label that contained another number in addition to the SPF to indicate the degree to which the product protected against UVA. "The second protection number created unnecessary complications and confusion for the consumer," says Patricia Agin, Ph.D., Schering-Plough's photobiology research director. "UVA should complement and not distract from SPF on the label. A descriptive approach better conveyed to consumers the added benefit of UVA protection and did not distract from the SPF number."

"SPF should remain the primary index of efficacy," agrees Jay Nash, Ph.D., of Proctor & Gamble Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Mason, Ohio, "and any additional descriptor should be independent and commensurate with this information. Simplicity is the key to public policy."

Simple or not, the labeling issue is not trivial because studies already show that consumers may not use sunscreens correctly. The public under-applies sunscreens by as much as half of the recommended amount, concluded a study published in the Archives of Dermatology. Consequently, the study argued, consumers are receiving only half of the SPF sunscreen protection they believe the product provides. Couple that with prolonged periods of baking in the sun and you have a recipe for future disease.

Larry Thompson is the editor of FDA Consumer.

To figure out how much protection a sunscreen provides, most consumers turn to a simple number: the SPF, or sun protection factor, listed on the label. Studies show that most consumers understand that the higher the number, the more the product protects the skin.

Unfortunately, studies also show that people often have the mistaken notion that the higher the SPF number of the sunscreen they use, the longer they can stay--and will stay--in the sun. In August 1999, the Journal of the National Cancer Institute published a study showing that use of higher-SPF sunscreens led to increased sun exposure. Two groups of French and Swiss volunteers used unlabeled sunscreen during their vacations. One group used SPF 10 and the other group used SPF 30. The group using the higher-SPF sunscreen spent 20 percent more time in the sun (72.6 hours vs. 58.2 hours) than the group using the lower-SPF sunscreen.

"Because of variations between individuals, products, exposures, and conditions of use, there is no really easy way to explain SPF in a few words," says FDA's Lipnicki. "In the past, it was explained in terms of the amount of time you could stay in the sun longer with sunscreen than without it before getting 'burned'. We have gotten away from that. Sunscreen should not be used to prolong time spent in the sun. Even with a sunscreen, you are not going to prevent all the possible damage from the sun. Some of the newer research in the last several years shows that the sub-erythemal doses [exposure to the sun that does not cause reddening of the skin], as little as one-tenth the energy needed to get a sunburn, start the process of skin damage of one sort or another."

In the final monograph completed last year, FDA proposed limiting SPF values on a sunscreen label to 30. Products with higher SPFs would be labeled "30+" (or "30 plus"). The agency took this action for two reasons: inadequacies in the testing methodologies for higher-level SPF formulations, and concern that the high SPF labeling may lead consumers to spend more time in the sun than they should.

The SPF portion of FDA's monograph immediately produced opposition from both industry groups and consumer organizations. The National Coalition for Sun Safety, an organization supported by the American Academy of Dermatology, advocated "a floor rather than a cap on SPF," wrote coalition co-chairmen Rex Arnonette, M.D., and Roger Ceilley, M.D. The organization wants a minimum level of SPF to ensure that all products provide some protection.

Industry, primarily represented by the Cosmetic, Toiletry and Fragrance Association (CTFA), opposed the 30-plus cap for several reasons, including consumer confusion, fear that manufacturers would remove effective sunscreen protection in their products to avoid misbranding, and unresolved scientific issues about UVA. With the deferral of the monograph's implementation, the industry, along with the agency, will have additional time to resolve the issues.
La Roche Posay Anthelios 40 Sunscreen

by Larry Thompson
Larry Thompson is the editor of FDA Consumer.

Sunscreen -UVA Rays vs. UVB Rays is explained in this article to help understand the differences...

The complexities of light quickly overwhelm freshmen physics students, but some basic principles can be readily understood. In one model of how light works, the electromagnetic radiation can be thought of as a series of waves, like ocean waves at the beach, steadily marching toward shore. At the beach, the wind makes the waves by transferring kinetic or mechanical energy into the water. The harder the wind blows, the more energy in the water and the higher and closer together the ocean waves. On a calm summer day, widely spaced waves lap mildly against the shore. During a hurricane, the wave action intensifies, pounding the sand with closely packed wave after wave of crashing white foam strong enough to wipe away the beach.

The electromagnetic energy in sunlight works much the same way: The higher the energy of the light, the closer together its waves. Some types of light have waves that are far apart--like ocean waves on a calm day. Other types of light have waves that are packed closely together, like ocean waves on a windy day.

This difference in closeness of a light's waves, its wavelength, gives different parts of the electromagnetic spectrum its characteristics, such as the colors of visible light and the destructive capabilities of x-rays and ultraviolet light.

Physicists classify ultraviolet light into three types, by its wavelengths: UVA, UVB and UVC. The dimensions of their wavelengths are roughly 400 to 320 nanometers (nm) for UVA, 320 to 290 nm for UVB, and 290 to 200 nm for UVC. Although it may seem backwards, the shorter the wavelength and the lower the number, the greater the energy level of the light and the more damage it can do. For example, direct exposure to UVC for a length of time would destroy the skin. Fortunately, UVC is completely absorbed by gases in the atmosphere before it reaches the ground.

The longer wavelengths of UVB and UVA, however, pass right through the atmosphere, even on a cloudy day. That's why you can still get sunburned on a cloudy or hazy day. The molecules in sunscreens absorb most UVB and prevent it from reaching the skin just as the molecules of the atmosphere absorb UVC and prevent it from reaching the ground.

UVA, however, is another story.

According to a 1998 review article, most sunscreens do not protect the skin from the longer UVA wavelengths. And that may be critical to the creation of skin cancer. Approximately 65 percent of melanomas and 90 percent of basal and squamous cell skin cancers are attributed to UV exposure.

The precise wavelengths of ultraviolet that contribute to the formation of skin cancer still need to be sorted out. And scientists must still figure out how best to formulate sunscreens to provide effective protection against these wavelengths.

Scientists use a number of techniques to measure the UV-blocking ability of a sunscreen. Some rely on electronic laboratory equipment, some on living tissue or live animals. Some testing procedures even use human volunteers.
"We have a good way of measuring UVB protection with a sunburn or erythema test in humans," says Sharon Miller, an optical engineer in FDA's Center for Devices and Radiological Health. But scientists lack a simple measure of UVA's impact on the skin, she says. That makes it difficult to determine how much UVA protection a sunscreen provides. La Roche Posay Anthelios 40 Sunscreen

That leaves FDA with an unresolved technical dilemma that it is trying to resolve through additional research. "We are trying to determine a testing method that will demonstrate that a sunscreen is providing UVA protection," Lipnicki says. A claim such as "broad spectrum" on a sunscreen label needs to be supported by evidence that the product provides significant and meaningful protection across the entire UVB/UVA spectrum.
To Australia's Robin Marks, however, the issue is not UVA vs. UVB or even UVA combined with UVB. "The most common skin cancers seen in humans are related to sunlight, not to a limited band of the solar spectrum," Marks says. "It is the whole of all light coming from the sun. Don't concentrate on one band, but the entire spectrum. Keep it off the skin."

N.B. Therefore, it is important to understand how it works: sunscreen-uva rays vs. uvb rays. Does your sunscreen cover both UVA and UVB protection?

by Larry Thompson
Larry Thompson is the editor of FDA Consumer.
I found one that does and comes very highly recommended. La Roche Posay Anthelios 40 Sunscreen

When we discuss advances in longevity research during lectures and seminars, the question of the deciding factor for longevity often comes up. Even without looking at examples of research in molecular biology research, it is obvious to most that genetics play a major factor in longevity. The longest-lived human recorded was a French woman named Jeanne Calment, who died at age 122. All her family was long-lived. The quest for the identification of longevity genes by studying centenarian families has been explored for a decade, but no bona-fide longevity gene was identified. Caloric restriction may extend the lifespan of human beings.

The environmental factors influencing the lifespan of human beings, such as nutrition, physical exercise, and mental relaxation play an important role in the determination of an individual lifespan. The mortality rates of lifestyle-related diseases such as heart disease, stroke, and cancer becoming getting higher and higher in Japan as well as in western countries where much of the population is graying. The preventive measures for lifestyle-related diseases such as nutritional intervention or regular physical exercise should be introduced for further extension of the healthy lifespan. Caloric restriction in experimental animals has been shown to extend the lifespan of animals with the decreased frequency of age-related diseases. Regular physical exercise stimulates the adipose tissues to secrete beneficial adipose hormones, such as adiponectin that suppress the progression of atherosclerosis and insulin resistance in type II DM and metabolic syndrome.

Shimizu T, Shirasawa T.

Research Team for Molecular Biomarkers, Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Gerontology.

Some of the best antioxidants are Blueberries.

• Antioxidants are thought to help protect the body against the damaging effects of free radicals and the chronic diseases associated with the aging process.

• Fresh fruits, including blueberries, and vegetables contain many of these naturally occurring antioxidants such as Vitamins C and E.

• Blueberries contain 14 mg of Vitamin C and 0.8 mg Vitamin E per 1 cup of blueberries. In addition, blueberries contain anthocyanins and phenolics that can also act as antioxidants.

• Based on data from the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging (Boston, MA), blueberries are among the fruits with the highest antioxidant activity.

• Researchers have shown that a serving of fresh blueberries provides more antioxidant activity than many other fresh fruits and vegetables.

So if you want to have better skin, eat foods known to be the best antioxidants--blueberries, for instance.

Better Results When You Build Collagen Naturally
There are a number of products on the market that make many claims about the collagen that is contained in their product. However, you should know that many of these products only contain collagen that is applied topically and that will never benefit your skin. When you do some research on the topic of collagen and your skin, you will discover that there are other more beneficial ingredients that encourage your skin to build collagen naturally and gain better results.

There are many products and collagen cream remedy products that are sold as a solution to the diminishing of collagen on your face as you age. The problem with the products that use this method is that collagen is not able to penetrate through the skin and produce any results. The skincare companies that manufacture these products do not tell you this information when you are researching skincare products. They would have you believe that their products will be able to replace the collagen that your skin is losing. The fact is that you need your own skin to produce collagen in greater amounts for there to be any results at all. Finding the ingredients that will help your skin build collagen naturally is the best approach to your skincare needs.

Science has made some stunning discoveries in the ingredients that can be used on the skin to produce dramatic results. When you are looking for a skincare product to help you battle the signs of aging, it is important that you look at all of this research and find your own conclusions about the products that will work best on your skin. You will be amazed at what has been discovered and how it works to improve the condition of your skin.

Reversing the signs of aging can take on many different methods. You can work to build collagen naturally for your skin and also maintain a healthy diet that is full of antioxidants to help your body fight the effects of aging. Because your skin is an organ, it is vital that you keep your diet well balanced if you are going to see effects on your skin. Check your diet and make sure that you are eating healthy if you want to fight off aging for a longer period of time.

Your body needs you to exercise every day. This can also have some beneficial effects for your skin as well. When your body is in good shape and eating the vitamins and minerals that your body needs, the results will be with clear and glowing skin. Good health is radiated from the skin and your overall well being.

Remember to make your skincare routine a regular part of your daily schedule. It is important that you are as healthy as possible and working to build collagen naturally for your skin. Use a collagen cream remedy that helps your body to produce its own collagen and not one that claims to apply collagen to your skin. You will be amazed at how healthy you look when you work on all these areas of your life.

Dr. Valerie Rosenbaum is a board certified dermatologist who has done extensive research on the way many chemicals used in skin care products do more harm than good. If you have fine lines, wrinkles or damaged skin then click here to visit her website to find out which skin care products she uses and recommends.

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After trying many eye creams, I can safely say that so far, I really like the Vichy with the vitamin C. I find that after I apply it, my wrinkles fade away. They are not visible and I believe this product really is a wrinkle reducer because as soon as I started using it, I haven't noticed my wrinkles worsening at all.

It is pretty difficult to find products on the market that you can really benefit from, and unfortunately, most of us don't have hundreds of dollars to spend on products that we don't like and hence, stop using only to buy others. Testing face creams and eye creams is very expensive so it's great when someone can recommend a product such as a wrinkle reducer and know that they (me!) are not in it just to make money (as I am not selling this product).

I was a smoker for most of my adult life and my teenage years. I decided to quit smoking because I wanted to be healthier. So I did it. After one month of quitting smoking I ran into an old friend that I hadn't seen for a few months and she commented on how great I looked; she repeatedly said that my skin looked good, healthy, and glowing. She asked me if I changed my makeup. Therefore, it is the best thing I ever did. I quit smoking and look younger now.

Set your target date, picture yourself as a non-smoker and reap the benefits. You'll be more energetic, happier, richer, healthier, and younger. It takes some will power but if you want to be healthier, not only will that happen, but if you combine all the pros and benefits, then quit smoking and look younger by starting today.

Your overall health shows in your hair, just as in every other part of your body, such as your skin, etc. In order to promote hair growth with vitamins. One must understand, which vitamins are required to strengthen your hair. For instance, vitamin A is necessary to maintain the oils found in your scalp. Vitamin B complex, B6, and be B9 vitamins are also vital to healthy hair, as is biotin.

Promote hair growth with vitamins, as mentioned above, or by eating foods that contain these vitamins. The foods that you should add to your diet are as follows:

  • Milk
  • Eggs
  • Cabbage
  • Spinach
  • Beans or legumes
  • Soy
  • Walnuts

Try eating more of these foods, and you will definitely notice a change in your hair.

Having had dark under eye circles, I can understand how you might feel. I thought for a long time that it had to do with my lifestyle, i.e, not getting enough sleep, among other things, until I researched it further. Dark under eye circles are natural and caused by broken down hemoglobin. The fact that the skin around the eyes is so thin and translucent; the capillaries are closer to surface of the epidermis, results in the dark under eye circles.

What can you do about Dark Under Eye Circles:

Naturally, you can use cucumber. It will lighten the skin. And it works. It may not be guaranteed to remove all the circle, but it will help. Cucumber will also relieve tired eyes.

Tea bags work great on puffy eyes; the caffeine reduces the amount of water in the tissue around the eyes. Bonus: tea is a great antioxidant. I would recommend chamomile tea because it is an anti-inflammatory which would remove the puffiness and swelling around your eyes.

Honestly, I have used both and can recommend them, each for its own benefits; I use the cucumber for the dark under eye circles and the tea bags for puffiness.

There are other routes to take in battling your dark under eye circles which I will share with you in another post. Stay tuned.

Thinning hair is a problem many women face, especially after menopause. It plays havoc on their self-esteem; causing them to shy away from functions, teasing their hair for it to appear fuller, perming it to achieve the same results, etc.

There are options that can thicken hair, stop hair loss, hair replacement programs, and among others. The importance lies in doing something to avoid becoming self-conscious, and stop the problem before it worsens.

For starters, before investing in any product to repair the situation, you should perhaps consider a wig. A small investment in a wig can do wonders for your confidence. Once you have that covered, you should look into treatment for your thinning hair or hair loss.

Lead in Lipstick

Posted by Mia | 10:35:00 AM | | 0 comments »

Recently, Health Canada tested 26 lipstick samples for traces in lead...21 of them contained lead. It is not necessarily the amount of lead content in each lipstick that should concern us, but the amount of times lipstick is reapplied each day multiplied by the amount of lead in the particular lipstick.

Should our governments inform us of these findings by furnishing the brands of lipsticks that contained lead? What do you think?

You can wake up one morning to notice crows feet and wrinkles that you were unaware of. Some people may shrug and go on to complete their morning routine, but others may begin to panic as they finally realize what it means to get older.

Every year we officially become one year older, and while we may not have control over that, we can still put up a fight when it comes to the age of our skin. You can ignore the problems with your skin or you can choose to find a way to reduce your wrinkles, while preventing new ones from forming. There are many plastic surgeons and patients who use them, but there are many simplistic things that you can easily do from the comfort of your own home, without going to the extreme.

The steps that you can take to have healthy, glowing skin are simple and you have heard of them all. Your regiment should include anti aging creams, diet and exercise as these promote overall health to your entire body. In this article we will take an in-depth look at each of these skin care tips.

1. Diet

Eating right can help us to achieve a healthy weight but it can also promote healthy skin. When you eat vegetables, whole grains, and fruits, you are giving your skin nutrients that it will need and in the end you can have smooth skin that is naturally moisturized. As we get older, our skin becomes drier and we need creams and other products to help keep it moist. If you ignore your dry skin, this can promote wrinkles, and skin that looks very unhealthy.

When you buy and eat whole food, you are giving your skin vitamins and rich antioxidants as well as minerals. These will all work together to reduce wrinkles and lines that can form around your facial features.

2. Exercise

Dieting and exercise are two things that always go together. If you want to lose weight and stay healthy, you should do both. The same is true for you skin. According to health professionals, we should indulge in exercise because it promotes the growth of collagen. As we get older, collagen production lessens overtime and exercise can help to produce it. More collagen means healthier looking skin.

Other reasons to add exercise to your regiment is to help with your body's circulation. This will help to rid your body of toxins and you are reward with healthy and younger looking skin. Exercise also helps you lose weight and it tightens and firms loose skin to give a youthful look.

3. Anti Aging Creams

Wrinkle cream serums that can reduce, remove or prevent wrinkles altogether should be another item added to your health regime. Just be aware that all creams are not the same. Before buying one product, you should spend some time doing research. Find out what cream works best and which is best for your skin type.

Anti aging creams that have vitamins and antioxidants are a great choice when choosing a specific product. Wrinkle creams are not always easy to choose from because there are hundreds on store shelves, all vying to be the product that you will buy. You want something that actually works and does exactly what the company advertised, if not more.

So there you have it.

You now know the 3 essential steps to looking younger and anti aging. Put these 3 steps into practice and you will feel the difference very quickly, and benefit from their health benefits right away. So don't wait another day until you start your anti aging routine for yourself.

About the Author
The top rated anti-wrinkle skin cream that gives results, do so in minutes! Find out which wrinkle creams work, at Marcus Ryan's and get these creams known as the ideal non surgical face lift, as free trials!

As the aging process these days is much more researched than it ever was before many of these processes that were once thought to be impossible to prevent are now proving to be avoidable after all even if some signs of wear and tear are apparent.

For instance providing all day long protection from ultraviolet rays with the new cosmetic products now available may not only guard against future damage to your skin but it may well undo some of the damage already done.

Taking the trouble to adopt a good skin care regime means that you need to adopt a realistic approach. Great looking skin is not necessarily skin without lines or wrinkles.

Even invasive surgery cannot claim back the years. Cosmetics can be used to an advantage but even the best of them cannot take away all the blemishes, take up any slack or restore the plump fresh look of our youth.

That face that you have lived with for all the years is now showing signs of some wear and tear but so what if it is well looked after. If the eyes are still bright and the complexion is clear, it will have the look of a beautiful 40, 50 or whatever year old and isn't that really all that matters?

So what are we getting at here? Well, it's all in your hands.

Many will tell you that there are no quick fixes and yes the best alternative is to start a skin care regime right now however you feel about yourself, start today for a better tomorrow.

Already we have mentioned the importance of the eyes looking their best but for many of us it is the area that most reflects the lifestyle we lead. Dark Circles, Puffy Eyes & Bags under Eyes are problems that irritate and make us look older than we really deserve.

Is there a solution?

Although many of us would simply attempt to hide those dark circles with concealers, the problem remains unsolved. Moreover, puffy eyes might be almost impossible to camouflage using concealers. The right approach to handle the issue of under eye dark circles and puffy eyes is a close analysis of the causes and the identification of the appropriate and most effective remedy.

Lead a healthy life

Firstly, our lifestyle and diet play an important part in maintaining overall health, keeping energy levels high and reducing the body's susceptibility to stress and diseases. Yoga, meditation, fresh air walks, adequate water intake and a balanced diet can go a long way in boosting the body's immunity and eliminating the factors that cause dark circles and eye bags.

Home remedies

Secondly, through the use of certain home remedies, blood circulation in the under eye area can be improved. Cold compresses or cucumber slices applied over closed eyes while resting can help revitalize the area around the eyes instantly.

Select a good under eye cream

One of the latest and easiest ways to tackle this issue is the use of under eye creams. A revolutionary product in this area is Eyederma, which has been developed especially to diminish both dark circles and puffiness under the eyes. Eyederma combines a peptide combination called Ocupeptide-3 with one of the most effective forms of Vitamin K to tackle this problem. Eyederma's ingredients have shown to significantly diminish dark circles and puffiness under the eyes, improving the general appearance of the under eye skin and strengthening the blood vessels around the eyes. Regular use of this revolutionary product could help maintain the desired results.

Brian Potter can help you with anti ageing skin care problems including bags under eyes, puffy eyes and how to remove dark circles under eyes.
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This Natural Homemade Anti-Aging Cream Recipe is made with all natural ingredients that you can find in your local health food store and will provide your skin with vitamins it requires.


1 ounce glycerin
1 ounce witch hazel
1/2 ounce rose water
3 tablespoons honey
3 tablespoons wheat germ oil

Combine ingredients in a glass / ceramic bowl and whisk until they are completely mixed. Store the mixture in a tightly sealed container (possibly a glass jar from a finished face cream, washed of course) at room temperature. It should keep for about 1 month.

Massage the Natural Homemade Anti-Aging Cream Recipe into the skin around the eyes and mouth, in circular and upward motions to counteract with gravity.

In a massive movement to live better and "greener," health savvy fashionistas started to look for something better than their bottles of liquid foundation containing ingredients that range from unpronounceable to unbelievable. Whether it was due to a trend sparked by a movement, or an uncanny coincidence, mineral makeup has hit the shelves with a force not seen in the makeup industry in years. Women can't get enough of these earthen face wares and there is plenty of reason for the demand.

As science continues to hone in on products and chemicals that can increase your risk of cancer, blemishes, skin damage, and other health issues, women are looking for friendlier makeup. Unfortunately, it's not always easy to find something that fits into that category and works well. This is where mineral makeup comes into play. Made from the minerals found naturally in the earth, this makeup is is chemical, dye, and preservative free. Women with sensitive or acne prone skin may be even more intrigued by this makeup because of it's lack of chemicals and other elements that tend to irritate skin. This alone makes mineral makeup a great alternative to what filled out makeup bags in the past.

The benefits of mineral makeup don't stop there. Many dermatologist agree that by nature this specific type of makeup can do the following for skin:

* Certain ingredients, like zinc oxide can help calm your skin which is great for those with problems like rosacea or acne.

* Due to it's makeup it will not clog pores or cause acne conditions to flare up or become work.

* The presence of zinc and titanium oxide in mineral makeup, many companies boast of the natural sun protection characteristics.

On the other side of the coin, some argue that mineral makeup is no better for your skin than regular makeup that women have been using for years. Just because it is from the ground doesn't necessarily means it's best for you. Some women who have tried mineral makeup have claimed that it not only isn't worth the hype but that it actually dries out and causes more skin irritation. Another complaint that has been associated with mineral makeup is it's lack of performance for ethnic skin The nature of the makeup isn't always conducive to those who have drier or aging skin and some even believe it may bring out wrinkles and age more so than other types of makeup.

Like any new trend in the market there are always believers and skeptics and mineral makeup is not free from these critics. If mineral makeup sounds like something you may be interested in, be sure to practice caution and read the labels. Always test the makeup on a small part of your skin. While it is believed to be better for skin, each person is made differently and while it may work for one person that doesn't necessarily mean it will work for you. Ultimately, the only way to find out if mineral makeup does work is to put it to the test for your self.

For more information on makeup like this, be sure to visit the experts at MakeUpTip at Article Source: Jennifer_Wasilewski

An Overview of Sun Damage

Posted by Mia | 11:41:00 PM | | 0 comments »

It is a wonder how people can still be sun worshipers even with all the scientific data that has been collected over the years. And if that isn't enough, it is clear as day on those who are older that would sun bathe for hours on end: their skin is wrinkled and badly damaged, so why doesn't the younger generation use this as an example? Apparently, humans want the best of both worlds: to look great and "healthy" in their youth with a golden tan, but unwrinkled in their older years. That is just wishful thinking. Skin care begins in your childhood and continues forever. This article describes the damage the sun can cause to unprotected skin.

For the last 50 years or so, Americans have had this obsession with being tan and enjoying the sun as much as possible. We've all seen the pictures of the people putting the huge foil reflectors by their faces to reflect as much sun back to the face as possible. To top off the lack of respect for the sun, sunscreen is a relatively new creation. All of this, as well as a variety of other factors, have led people to have incredibly damaged skin due to the sun.

Sun damage, or photo damage, refers to how the sun alters the look and feel of the skin. In many cases it is a form of extrinsic aging or aging caused by the surroundings of an individual. Extrinsic aging is collective; its effects are exacerbated with repeated unprotected exposure to the sun.

Photo damage is caused by frequent exposure to UV rays. UV rays are an undetectable form of radiation emitted by the sun. There are two main types: UVA and UVB. UVB rays are short wavelength rays that affect the upper layers of skin and cause sunburn. UVA rays have a longer wavelength and affect the middle levels of the skin. These are the rays that damage the collagen and other portions of the skin and make people look old. In addition, they are also the cancer causing rays.

The results of exposure to these rays are particularly apparent on the face. They cause fine lines, wrinkles, discoloration, textural changes, and frequently even cancer. In addition, the epidermis becomes thinner which allows the skin to blister, to tear, and to graze more easily. The skin also feels dry because it is less able to hold onto water. In addition, there is increased dermal scarring from repeated inflammation.

While the damage done to an individual's skin can not be completely reversed, the appearance of an individual's skin can be improved. This is done through a variety of methods. Some methods require visiting a plastic surgeon (for Botox treatments for wrinkles) while other methods can be done at home.

The home remedies include applying lotions and creams that contain Alpha-Hydroxy acids, Vitamin C, lipoic acid, or retinoid. These, when applied regularly, may reduce the number of fine wrinkles and fade blotchy pigmentation. Resurfacing procedures such as dermabrasion, chemical peels, fractional laser treatment, and laser resurfacing all remove the top lawyer of damaged skin which is then replaced by new, healthy cells.

It is important to keep in mind that if your skin is very damaged, wrinkles may be the least of your problems. Skin cancer is a very real possibility for anyone with lots of damage. Be sure to check with your dermatologist immediately if you notice anything odd about your freckles or moles.

If you would like more information concerning skin resurfacing treatments, feel free to contact the Houston medical spa professionals of Dermagenix via their website Their experienced team will be more than happy to answer any questions you might have concerning your skin damage and any treatment options available to you.
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Many people develop a double chin as they age, and it is an ugly side effect of aging. Surgery can correct a double chin and remove the excess fat and skin, but not everyone wants to have a face lift or operation. For those people who want to restore their double chin to a more youthful look without going under the knife, there is a product that can help.

A double chin is caused by fat deposits that gradually stretch out the sin and cause the chin's sagging appearance. If you want to get rid of your double chin the first thing you need to do is to start a diet and exercise program that will help you to lose excess fat all over your body. Because a double chin is nothing more than an excess fat store, consuming fewer calories than you take in will help to reduce the fat. Although a general diet and exercise program will help to reduce your sagging chin, it can be a stubborn area to tone as exercising it can be a challenge.

Some people will find success in this method alone, and other will notice only a small reduction in the fat under their chin. Everyone stores fat differently and while the proper diet and exercise will help everyone to varying degrees, some people need more help than others. This is why many people turn to specialized chin exercises and chin wraps, such as the Velform chin wrap. This chin wrap is designed to re-firm the chin and reduce the look of sagging. Many people have great success with the Velform chin wrap and after using it correctly find that they have a firm, taught chin once again.

The Velform chin wrap works in combination with a reaffirming reducer gel that helps to firm your chin and reduce the sagging. You simply apply the gel to your chin and neck, slip on the chin wrap, adjust it to your chin using the simple closures, and enjoy the feeling of a firmer chin. The Velform chin wrap raises your sagging chin and allows the reaffirming gel to tone and tighten it.

The chin wrap allows the gel to penetrate the skin and fat cells helping to reduce the fat and re-firm the hanging skin. The Velform chin wrap only has to be used twice a day, once for 10 minutes and once at 20 minutes. Results can usually be seen within a week with full results happening after a month. The chin wrap is easy to use and adjusts easily to any chin size with elastic and simple fasteners.

Find out more information about losing a double chin with Velform Chin Wrap. Velform Chin Wrap Information -- Article Source:

Botulinum toxins and Botox are approved by the FDA for treatment of various symptoms, such as eyelid or neck spasms, the relaxing of facial lines and even excessive sweating. But everyone beware of the Serious Side Effects of Botox.

Just days ago the U.S. FDA issued a warning that using Botox, or botulinum toxins, may have serious consequences including death. Even though, the FDA didn't ban the use of botulinum toxins which are natural poisons found in decomposing food and are 40 million times more potent than cyanide. Reactions from these toxins have led to breathing problems and even death.

The FDA claims the reactions were suggestive to botulism which is what happens when these toxins spread throughout the body.

The most serious of reactions and deaths have been in children which were administered botulinum toxins to treat cerebral palsy. The FDA has not actually approved these treatments.

Patients administered Botox for cosmetic purposes were not among deaths reported but vigilance is urged.

How long are you going to live? Of course, no-one has the answer, but you may have more control over your longevity than you think. The choices you make every day can significantly influence the length of your life. You're probably wondering how you can make the most of your life and keep the aging process at bay. Well, in order to live a healthy, robust, and vibrant life, here are some anti-aging fitness tips that will keep your body and mind feeling young:

Tip #1 - Strength Training - One great tip that will help you stay young is to start strength training. Sure, there are other forms of exercise that are great as well; however, keeping muscle mass even as you age is crucial. Believe it or not, after you get into your mid forties you will begin to lose about ¼ pound of muscle every year and fat comes in its place. However, if you do the right strength training exercises you can keep from losing this muscle and you can even work on regaining muscle mass. Just lifting weights for about 30 minutes a few times a week can provide great benefits. You'll sleep and think better, your bones will be stronger, you'll have more endurance, and you'll have less chance of developing diabetes.

Tip #2 - Start Walking - When it comes to anti-aging fitness, you don't need to start exercising hours a day; in fact, here is a very simple exercise that is so great for people who want to avoid aging. Walking is a great form of exercise that is low impact and it can also help to increase the flexibility of the walls of your arteries as well. Just going out on a nice walk five days a week for about 30 minutes is enough. This type of exercise can help reduce your risk of developing diabetes, depression, dementia, cancers, and even aging of the skin.

Tip #3 - Eat Healthy - Another important tip to remember if you want to keep young and fit is to eat healthy. Your diet should consist of plenty of fruits and vegetables daily as well as whole grains to help you get the vitamins, minerals, and micronutrients that you need. You should also make sure that you drink plenty of water. Only about 30-35% of your calories per day should come from fats. Plenty of protein should be part of your diet and you should work to make sure that most of the carbohydrates in your diet are complex ones, such as wild rice, oatmeal, and whole wheat bread.

So, even though you may be getting older in years, each of these anti-aging fitness tips can help you look and feel younger than your actual age. Keep a great attitude about life, incorporate these tips, and you'll begin to reap the benefits.

(c) Copyright by Lisa Taliga. You may print this article for personal use or republish it only if it is left unaltered and in its entirety, including by-lines, links and author information. Contact the author for any other permissions.

Do you love chocolate, ice cream, pizza, cheese and perhaps the odd vegetable? If you want to find a way to enjoy your favorite foods without bloating your stomach, piling on the pounds, getting a fuzzy head and draining your energy, Lisa Taliga has something to say. Visit for more anti aging fitness and fat loss tips.

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Posted by Mia | 1:45:00 AM | | 0 comments »

What's a woman's worst enemy other than cellulite? Wrinkles! We all know that wrinkles are inevitable but none of us want to get them any sooner than we have to. Wouldn't it be nice if there was something you could do to slow or even eliminate wrinkles? There is! It's called superfoods.

See, if you want to look 10 years younger, using wrinkle creams that really work together with some simple but important lifestyle and diet changes will have your skin look a whole lot younger. Focusing on both at the same time will give you so much more results!

So what are these superfoods, and what do they do?

Dr. Perricone has identified 10 superfoods that cannot only play an important role in reducing or eliminating wrinkles and keeping your skin more youthful, but also in keeping you a great deal healthier. A direct link has been made between some foods and healthy, beautiful skin with fewer wrinkles.

Since we can't cover all ten foods in one article, we'll have a look at two - Buckwheat and Green Foods. Let's learn a little more about the benefit of these two.

Buckwheat is often mistaken for a grain but it is actually a seed of a relative to the rhubarb plant. Buckwheat has even more protein than wheat, rice, and millet and it is gluten free an added bonus for anyone with gluten allergies.

The high protein levels in buckwheat have some unique health benefits. Buckwheat is also packed with vitamins, minerals, mono-saturated fatty acids, all of which are good for your health. Flavonoids, and high levels of antioxidant polyphenols, which are excellent at removing toxins from the body and keeping your skin healthy and with few wrinkles.

Green Foods include wheat and barley grasses as well as blue green algae such as in spirulina and chlorella. These foods are extremely powerful because they are packed with nutrients. Wheat and barley grasses are packed with antioxidants that do a fantastic job of removing toxins from the body. These two are equal on polynutrient value and fresh grasses have enzymes that dried grasses do not. Juice bars and health markets are the health market offer fresh grass juices.

The blue green algae are single celled plants, superior in chlorophyll, protein, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Spirulina is so powerful that it can inhibit infectious viruses like flu and herpes for example. Chlorella binds heavy metal toxins such as mercury and removes them from your body. Both reduce allergies, protect the liver from toxins, control colitis symptoms, and most importantly have strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, which help remove toxins from your skin protecting it from fine lines and wrinkles.

Whether we are talking about buckwheat, green foods, or one of the other superfoods, the key is that all of them have strong antioxidant powers, which help remove toxins from the body's largest organ - the skin - that results in fewer wrinkles, even the elimination of those wrinkles. Other nutrients boost your overall health, which plays an important role in feeding the skin and keeping it plump and younger looking.

The secrets out - now you know how some woman manage to look 30 when their 50. Now you can also have vibrant, more youthful skin with fewer wrinkles just by adding superfoods to your diet.

If you want the wrinkle cream that works, then visit Marcus Ryan's review site for the wrinkle creams that gives results within 7 minutes! Get free trials of these breakthrough wrinkle creams to prove how well they work! So go ahead and look 10-20 years younger and enjoy the benefits this brings!

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Natural Skin Care Products

Posted by Mia | 12:39:00 AM | | 0 comments »

It seems that natural skin care products are all the rage lately. And rightfully so. Many are tired of living in a chemical-based world full of pollution, toxins, pesticides, and the like. There are so many positive results shown from natural skin care products that many feel it illogical to apply chemicals on their skin when similar progress can be made naturally.

There is one glitch, however. Natural skin care products must contain a relatively high concentration of the primary natural ingredient or vitamin in order to have an effect, and this is costly. So if your product is relatively inexpensive, it may be less effective due to its lack of potency.

This natural compound, found naturally in the skin of fish (especially wild salmon)is known for providing excellent collagen support to the outermost layers of skin (the most important since this is what shows on the surface!). The results are tighter, firmer skin and a great reduction in fine lines and wrinkles. It also is known for helping to reduce age spots (liver spots), and is a well known memory and concentration enhancer.

2) Alpha Lipoic Acid
This natural acid is a very potent antioxidant that eliminates free radicals, one of the primary factors in the aging of skin and breakdown of skin elasticity. When applied externally and taken internally as a skin supplement, it can dramatically improve skin’s appearance within a matter of just a few weeks.

3) Vitamin C
Well, Vitamin C truly is the miracle cure vitamin! Topical Vitamin C protects the skin from sun damage, and even helps reverse the effects of photo-damage (sun damage) on the skin. It protects from sun damage (in conjunction with a sunscreen of course), by neutralizing free radicals. Vitamin C is actually the only antioxidant that is proven to increase the production and synthesis of collagen. Vitamin C is an absolute must-have in your skin care regimen regardless of your skin type.

4) Retinol
Retinol is a natural form of vitamin A. It helps the skin regenerate and rejuvenate in a healthy manner and is especially effective on sensitive skin since it does not cause redness or peeling.

This is a great Home made skin care toner/pH Balancer. Apply after regular cleansing or after any skin treatment.

3 cups distilled water
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar

Combine water and vinegar. Pour into a clean bottle or a clean decorative decanter to store in the bathroom.
Apply with clean sterile cotton balls or gauze avoiding the eyes.

You can add essential oils for scent or therapeutic value to your pH Balancer.