With thousands of years of history and endless products on the current market, skin care can be a confusing thing to understand. Ingredients, products types and tools can blend together and the true purpose of them can be lost. Let’s unravel it all and talk about skin care simply.
Information below should not be taken as medical advice. Please see a doctor before using medicated products.
Retinoids increase the level of collagen produced in the skin and increases the production of new blood vessels. Collagen reduces fine lines and wrinkles in the skin whereas new blood vessels means more blood, oxygen and nutrients traveling to the face.
This nearly clear substance is naturally created in the body, mainly found in connective tissue and in the eyes. It retains water and increases lubrication, increasing moisture when applied to the skin.
This acid is commonly used as antiseptic, anti bacterial and as a food preservative. Due to its ability to kill bacteria and germs it is commonly used to treat acne. It is capable of penetrating and breaking down fats and lipids, allowing it to penetrate into pores to kill the bacteria within them.
Similar to Salicylic acid, this medication works by killing bacteria. This product does deactivate most retinoids so be aware of which products you are working with to keep them efficient. It may cause drying and peeling of the skin. It is important to wear sunscreen after using this product.
This acid works in the upper layer of the epidermis, weakening the lipids that hold dead skin cells together. This allows for “chemical exfoliation”.
Another acne treatment that works by reducing the sebum secreted in areas where it is applied over a long term period. It is also an anti-inflammatory, which is why it is also used in treating inflammatory skin condition.
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Lactic acid can break apart normally unbreakable lactates. This means it can make water soluble things that are usually not. It is also used as a disinfectant in cosmetics.
This white powder has the ability to absorb both UVA and UVB ultraviolet radiation. It is commonly used in sunscreens and in some SPF foundations to protect the skin from sun damage.
Derived from the jojoba seed, this oil is used in cosmetic and hair products to increase the moisturizing effects of the product. It is an indigestible oil and is most commonly found in products labeled “all natural”.
Tea tree oil
Tea tree oil is commonly used to treat acne, scent, dandruff, lice, insect bites, fungal infections and bacterial infections. Effectiveness has not been definitively proven. It is poisonous if ingested and considered unsafe for use on children.
Alpha hydroxy acids
AHAs and BHAs (beta hydroxy acids) are ingredients commonly found in chemical peels that allow the skin cells to break apart and allows the newer skin cells below to be at the surface.
Astringents are the strongest form of toner, usually containing a high level of alcohol, used as an antiseptic to the skin. They can remove lipids from the skin, but can also be very irritating to the skin. For less irritating astringents, look for alcohol free ones.
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Toners are designed to remove lipids from the skin while also keeping the skin moist with humectants like glycerine. Some toners like acid toners are designed to create micro tears in the skin to permit exfoliation. Skin tonics are another type which are designed to hydrate skin.
Commonly done at home with derma rollers, micro needling is used for collagen induction therapy. This means that using these needles can force the skin to produce collagen. Due to its piercing of the skin, it also allows other products and medications to penetrate the skin.
They commonly come in jade, quartz and metal. When cooled before use they can soothe your skin, reducing puffiness and tighten pores. General use benefits include improving blood flow to the face, lymphatic drainage and it can help distribute skin care products.
Through use of medical grade blades, the top layer of the skin is removed in a physical exfoliation. It also removes hair on the face. It is said to reduce fine wrinkles and acne scarring. It is highly recommended to have the cosmetic procedure to be performed by a certified dermatologist.
I was very excited to write this post. Being someone who wants to be preventative through skin care in regards to aging, I dug deep into researching to formulate a skin care routine that would benefit my skin the most. I think the age old advice holds true though. Wash your face twice a day, wear sunscreen daily and never go to bed with make up on your face.
I would be very happy to make another more specialized list on cosmetic procedures, tools or products if you want it! Let me know in the comments or like the post to let me know you want more.
The reason I wrote this is due to my interest in preventative skin care in regards to acne, aging and sun damage. Not everyone is interested in these topics, but to me they seem rather important. Looking at my family on both sides I have seen both very graceful aging and less so graceful aging and the difference has been skin care and commitment to protection from sun damage. I do not want to age quickly, nor do I want to have acne scarring for my lifetime, so looking into and committing to preventative skin care is a part of my daily life.