Submit your skincare questions to Dr. Agnes, CEO of Herborium and natural medicine expert
In part I of a discussion on safety of acne treatments, we
discussed how when we find ourselves suddenly experiencing acne
breakouts, or when we suffer a long battle with acne and nothing seems
to help, we may be willing to take any prescription acne treatment our doctor prescribes.
We may also reach for the first over-the-counter
treatment we lay our eyes on or just look for what seems "the
strongest." Again, what we often forget about is to consider both
short-term and long-term health consequences. Whatever the choice is,
it will affect not only our skin but our entire system. So become an
Read on to learn more about your over-the-counter acne
treatment and whether or not it's safe for you to keep using. And if
you're using prescription acne treatments, don't forget to check out part 1 of this discussion.
When we find ourselves suddenly experiencing acne breakouts,
or when we suffer a long battle with acne and nothing seems to help, we may try anything that our doctor will prescribe.
What we often forget about is to consider both short-term and
long-term health consequences of treatments. Many products used for
acne treatment are systemic (taken orally), and obviously they will
affect not only our skin but our entire system. So, to be on the safe
side, you really need to educate yourself before putting anything in to
Learn more about your prescription acne treatment and
whether or not it's safe for you to keep using, and keep your eye out
for part 2 of this hot topic, which will help you decide whether your over-the-counter acne treatment is safe.
The fact is that more than 1 in 2 women will develop acne during pregnancy, especially during the first trimester.
The problem is how to manage acne during the pregnancy while ensuring
the safety of baby and mother, and to help the woman to feel the best
she can during this very important period of her life. After all, a
happy mommy is the best mommy.
Below is some important information on what to avoid, and what you can actually do to safely manage your acne during pregnancy.
We do everything
we can to keep our skin healthy. We change our skincare routines to suit
the season, we try to eliminate any ingredients that may be harming our
skin. We eat seasonal, organic, acne-friendly foods and remain dedicated to our acne treatment regimen.
But sometimes, mother nature throws us a loop. Sometimes, the mild
winter weather our skin was doing just fine in is suddenly arctic and
unrelenting--and that takes its toll on our skin. Traveling from a cold
destination to a warm destination can take the same toll.
So how do we keep our skin healthy during these crazy temperatures?
Not everyone wants overpriced roses and fancy dinner dates for Valentine's Day. So if you find yourself looking for a different way to celebrate YOU on Valentine's Day this year, consider throwing a mini spa party for yourself and even your friends! Also be sure to check out our other Valentine's Day articles for some healthy treat ideas and skin-friendly cocktail recipes!
Having acne-prone skin doesn't mean having to miss out on all the
fun of either celebrating or not celebrating Valentine's Day! You can
still enjoy yourself and enjoy a cocktail right alongside your friends
without exacerbating your acne.
You might be wondering what sort of cocktail you could sample (of
course, if you are 21 years old or older and... in moderation) that
won't give you sugar overload and negatively affect your skin. Try these
2 amazing cocktail recipes - your friends won't believe how healthy and
skin-friendly they are!
When we think of Valentine's Day, we usually think of candy hearts and boxes of chocolate from friends and loved ones. And for those of us with acne, we think about how eating all of this extra sugar may wreak havoc on our skin.
Need some V-Day ideas your skin will love? We've got you covered!
1. Handmade Valentines: Feeling loved and loving others is a surefire way to boost your mood. A happy person
is one less likely to fall prey to stress, which can exacerbate acne.
So spread the love this Valentine's Day with handmade valentines. Taking
the time to craft a heartfelt message to your loved ones will remind
you how happy you make each other, and your skin will glow with
knowledge that powerful.
You want to throw a rocking Super Bowl party--what you don't want to do
is ruin the fun by chowing down on foods that may sabotage all your
progress to get acne-free. Luckily, there are easy ways to turn your
Super Bowl Sunday skin-friendly without ruining the fun.
You know that pizza you
were planning to pick up from the local takeout? Oh, and that
store-bought guacamole? Forget about them and make your own. We know
you're busy, but think of how much better you'll feel knowing you're
munching on the healthiest, most nutrient-dense pizza and guacamole
Toss your own whole
wheat pizza dough into a thin crust. To keep the sugar to a minimum,
skip the tomato sauce and top with a variety of fresh, organic,
veggies--tomatoes, peppers, spinach, squash, you name it--and a sprinkle
of organic cheese. Bake and slice into small, finger-food-sized squares
and share with your friends.
Some of the fruits and vegetables that you'll find at your local markets can actually help to heal, cleanse and nourish your skin from within. However, you don't want to get too excited and start throwing any fruit or vegetable you can find into your juicer. Some fruits may be better for your acne-prone skin than others. For example, if you have found in the past that you don't handle apples well, then you probably shouldn't throw them into the mix: juicing fruits or vegetables that aren't right for YOUR BODY won't magically make them good for you.
Okay, let's be
honest: we may have succumbed to temptation (some more, some less) over
the holidays, and now we need a decisive action to repair potential
damage we did to our regimen for acne-free skin.
Follow these 3 essential steps to get back on track. The best scenario
involves combining all 3 steps in a 3-day super detox. If you cannot do
it all together however, do it in 2 or 3 consecutive
We love myths. Our
love of myths is the reason we populated Mount Olympus and the surrounding
rivers and forests and even the seas of Greece, with a wonderful plethora of
gods which survived thousands of years in literature, poetry and even common
language. Actually, every culture has a similar collection of great, creative,
But when we start
transferring our weakness for myths from love and war stories to such important
areas as health and make them into a pseudoscience, we have a problem.
I want to address one
of those myths, a myth
about testosterone-creating or testosterone-mimicking foods and plants that
make women break-out in acne.
Membership® Becomes the Loyalty Program®.
As of Wednesday,
January 8, 2014,
the Premier Membership Program® will become the AcnEase Loyalty
There are some
important changes that we hope bring AcnEase® users
like you more benefits.
Premier® member you do NOT need to do anything. There is NO signing
fee! And there are NO MONTHLY FEES! Present Premier® members are
switched to the Loyalty Program® automatically.
Both women and men
should look for non-comedogenic (non-pore-clogging) foundations and
concealers if they want to cover up their acne or any marks and scars.
Make sure your makeup does not contain any of the following comedogenic oils
Choose one of the following meats that are great for acne-prone skin. Always look for wild-caught when it comes to fish.
The holiday season
is a time for beauty but also for stress and cutting corners on proper
skincare, eating habits, and a healthy lifestyle (including getting
regular sleep and exercise). It's no surprise that this is the time for
acne to flare up.
So to make it up to your skin for slacking in these areas, here's a 12-day guide to keeping breakouts away:
Before exfoliating naturally with a papaya mask,
try holding your face over a sink full of steaming hot water for a few
minutes. This will open your pores and prep the skin for effective but
Everything we put
into and on our bodies affects our health and the health of our skin.
And everything that goes into our bodies can be classified as either
natural or artificial. These days, believe it or not, when a product is
labeled "natural," some or many of the listed ingredients may actually
be artificial or, contain an insignificant amount of a natural
ingredient which may do not provide any real benefits. Just because
something says it's natural, doesn't mean it is. It also does not mean
that it is good for you. Using the word "natural" has become a
marketing gimmick, and as a result, you may often be lead down the wrong
A product labelled
"natural" might not mean what you think it means. And you might be
paying extra for a product that isn't much better than the one that's
not labelled "natural."
definition of "natural": means derived from or made by nature. The FDA
defines natural ingredients as those derived from natural sources, such
as lecithin derived from soybeans and corn. But did you know the
majority of soybeans and corn are genetically modified here in the US?
If you have acne,
you've likely been told to stay away from sugar, and you've likely been
confused. Does that mean you can't even have fruit? That you should
consume sugar substitutes? That you can't make any of your favorite
recipes this holiday season?
Allow us to help you clear the confusion in time for your next holiday party.
First, check out
your refrigerator. Any mayo or Canadian bacon or soda in there? Now
check your pantry. Is it full of cookies and other packaged goodies?
Yes? Then it's full of sugar, too-and probably not the good kind. The
sad truth is that sugar can be found in almost every food these days.
When you combine all this sugar with foods that easily and rapidly
convert into sugar like potatoes, pasta, crackers and potato chips, your
skin may suffer the consequences.
Stress is a horrible
feeling no matter what time of year it is, but it's especially horrible around
the holidays, when it tends to creep up on us and keep us from getting the most
out of family time.
Even more unfortunate
is the fact that stress is more than just a feeling. No matter what kind of
stress you're experiencing, your body will respond in the same way: Adrenaline,
the number one stress hormone, speeds up the heartbeat, breathing and metabolic
rate to give you a necessary rush of extra energy. Adrenaline is produced and
stored in our two adrenal glands, which are situated on top of the kidneys.
With long-term stress, these glands will deplete.
Too much stress on our
systems releases excess stress-related hormones, enzymes and other chemicals
that leave us anxious and tense--and also with overstimulated sebaceous glands,
which leads to more acne.
When winter brings
cold air, harsh winds and falling snow our way, we're quick to trade in
our summer T-shirts and fall jackets for heavier coats, fluffy scarves
and warm gloves. But did you know you should be changing more than just
the clothes you wear on your body? It's very possible you need to change
the products you use on your body, as well.
If you have
acne-prone skin, winter calls for a different skincare regimen than the
one that got you through the warmer months. Failing to adjust your
skincare routine could result in dry, flaky skin that will only make
Who doesn't want to go a bit overboard with makeup on Halloween?
Though this is the time to get away with it, you still may want to do it in a
way that does not exasperate your acne.
Here are some Halloween tips to look crazy-good but let your
acne-prone skin survive the night.
Acne is a result of your pores being stuffed with too much sebum
(skin oil) mixed with dirt, sweat, dead skin cells and, of course, bacteria.
We carve them, we
stick them on our porches, we wait on line for once-a-year lattes, we make pies
and soups and then we forget about pumpkins until next year.
So let's talk about
why pumpkins should be on our minds all year round if you have acne.
Pumpkins are rich in
nutrients and microelements that our skin and body can benefit from:
Acne-prone skin is
usually a victim of too much sebum (skin oil) being produced by your
sebaceous glands. It clogs your pores, and together with dirt, dead skin
cells and of course bacteria will produce inflammation that manifests
itself as pimples, comedones or cysts. Even the best makeup staying on
your face overnight will add to this inflammation. Wash it out
religiously each night.
you exercise, you sweat... and sweat is a mixture of water and your
skin oils. Adding makeup to this mix will clog your pores more and cause
breakouts and enlarged pores, possibly perpetuating the acne cycle.
An educated consumer is a smart consumer!
You certainly want to
make sure that what you use will get rid of or at least contain your
acne breakouts. So before you reach out for a bottle, cream or pill,
Acne is actually a
rather complex disease, even though the clinical manifestation is rather
simple: pimples! The driving force behind the formation of pimples is
what is more complex. For instance, some women have an over-secretion of
the adrenal glands that leads to elevated levels of testosterone (and
androgen) in their blood, which is the cause of acne. For some, during
adolescence, there may be a large growth spurt with very high levels of
hormones. For others, acne is linked to their menstrual cycle. Genetic
variation is also a large contributing factor; if parents had acne, it
is likely their children will also have acne.
your skin appropriately is recognized as potentially one of the most
important "helpers" in acne treatment, as it can help remove
bacteria-attracting dirt and extra, clogging dead skin cells from the
pores. Unfortunately, if done inappropriately cleaning may actually hurt
your acne-prone skin.
5 Rules for Cleaning Your Acne-Prone Skin
Although diet is not the cause of skin problems like acne, it plays an important role in their treatment. A poor diet can exacerbate acne, even if you do everything else right, but a good diet can help fight it. Since acne is an external manifestation of an internal disorder, the right foods can heal, cleanse and nourish your skin from within.
Here is the perfect menu to keep your kitchen acne-friendly:
Acne-Friendly Breakfast: Kiwi-flaxseed oatmeal and a skin-cleansing raspberry-pineapple-ginger smoothie
Why? If you don’t have wheat allergies, whole grains are great for you. They’re an excellent source of fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, thiamine, iron, beta-glucan (which may help regulate blood sugar), vitamin B6, and the antioxidants known as avenanthramides (which may help promote healthy circulation). Flaxseed provides a good dose of vitamins E and B6 as well as essential fatty acids (EFAs). Kiwi is rich in many microelements including zinc, which is great for acne-prone skin and also contains a load of antioxidants. A skin-cleansing raspberry-pineapple-ginger smoothie is a great healing drink that will reduce inflammation, provide a healthy dose of antioxidants and help your skin, and body, to regain a healthy balance.
Acne breakouts do not come from what you put on your skin, so they cannot be treated by topical products. In short-most
acne may be traced to fluctuations in hormone levels, especially
androgens (male hormones, also known as testosterone), and their power
to over-stimulate sebaceous glands. As acne results from inflammation
caused by sebum-clogged hair follicles (pores) and bacteria, routing out
the factors that cause overproduction of sebum is very important. So if
you want to break the acne cycle, you need to help the body to balance
itself and stop over-stimulating the sebaceous glands.
That said, we also need to remember that the
skin is the largest organ of our body. Just the top layer of the skin
(epidermis) covers about 3000 square inches! This big organ is also a
very vulnerable one, and your habits can either help to fight acne or...
actually make your breakouts worse.
makes an occasional mistake or allows for slip-ups in their skincare
routine and until these do not become regular occurrences, we should not
worry about them too much.
when those occasional skincare transgressions become bad habits, they
may take a real toll on your skin and increase the frequency or severity
of the acne breakouts - and even increase the probability of acne
take a few minutes every day to take care of your skin, and it will pay
you back with a clear complexion, less enlarged pores, less blackheads
and whiteheads and even less acne scars.
Here are five of the most damaging bad habits for acne prone skin.
it may sound counterintuitive, some natural oils may help to fight oily
skin and improve breakouts. There is much talk about coconut oil and
whether or not it's effective in helping acne prone skin, so here are
especially large and chronic cysts or pimples and blackheads that we
squeeze or pop, may damage skin tissue permanently, forming acne scars.
The only real way to make sure that you do not get acne scars is to PREVENT acne from forming and to break the acne cycle.
There is however a condition that may follow acne, but is NOT permanent, that sometimes is confused with acne scars; this condition is known as Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation (PIH).
is the medical term for skin discoloration resulting from an
inflammatory injury to the skin tissue. It is the skin's natural
response to inflammation. PIH is a flat area of discoloration on the
skin ranging from pink to red, purple, brown or black, depending on your
skin tone and depth of the discoloration.