COSMECEUTICALS How to Care For Your Skin - Basic Skin Care Advices

How to Care For Your Skin

Some Basic Down-to-Earth Advice


Lois W. Stern *

* This article is excerpted from Madeleine Arena's chapter, Your Facial Landscape
which appears in Tick Tock, Stop the Clock ~ Getting Pretty On Your Lunch Hour

Magazines are filled with product ads making irresistible claims. Knowing which products will work for you can be a daunting task. Although it is possible to go it alone, you need to learn a great deal about specific skin care ingredients, what they can do for your skin and how to use them properly. The advise of a skin care professional such as a cosmetic dermatologist or esthetician can be invaluable in setting you on the proper path as you chart your course.

There are many advantages to working with a professional. They will begin by educating you about your skin type and its special needs while helping you set goals for its improvement. These specialists are skilled at working with you to establish an effective skin care routine with the right products for your skin type and/or skin problems.

According to the American Society for Dermtalogic Surgery (ASDS):

Looking for a quick fix to erase wrinkles, tighten skin, reduce the signs of aging or treat acne could be as easy as a trip down to the local drug store. However, with so many over-the-counter products available, the beauty aisle can be overwhelming. Some skin care products are overpriced and make claims they canít support. Other products that claim to take years off your face could be misleading and ineffective.

. . . over-the-counter products for skin rejuvenation and preservation can be very effective if the consumer knows what to look for. Itís best to research the product and its ingredients to find the products that work best for your specific skin type. The most expensive products are not always the right products for certain skin types.

When searching for an over-the-counter product, the ASDS offers the following tips:


  • Do know your skin type: Before purchasing over-the-counter skin care products there are some basic facts to know. Whether skin is dry, oily or sensitive could greatly impact how the product interacts with your skin.
  • Do use a sunscreen on a daily basis: If your skin is sensitive, and tends to react poorly to certain products, look for a sunblock whose first active ingredient is zinc oxide or titanium dioxide.
  • Do create a daily skin care routine: The key to success with most skin care products is repetition. Establishing a daily routine is important, especially with anti-aging creams.
  • Do be cautious of ìmiracleî products: Skin care products that seem ìtoo good to be trueî probably are, so use your best judgment. Reputable product lines are the best bet and likely to be most effective and safe.

Do Not:
  • Donít buy products without doing research: When purchasing products, read the labels to find the active ingredients. If there are ingredients that are unfamiliar, look them up to find out how they work. For example, products claiming to contain BotoxÆ could be deceptive as BotoxÆ is only effective when injected directly into the underlying muscle.
  • Donít be discouraged if you donít see immediate results: It may take six to eight weeks before you see improvement, especially with over-the-counter remedies. Itís important to remember that for the most part, over-the-counter products are not strong enough to treat advanced anti-aging problems. Because manufacturers of over-the-counter remedies canít control who purchases their products, these companies compromise by developing products with lower strength ingredients that can be safely used by most people without negative side effects.
  • Donít forget to use products that contain sunscreen: Protecting skin from the harsh sun is important.
  • Donít forget about protecting your lips: Ultraviolet rays can cause lip cancer. One study revealed that men in North America have a five to ten times greater incidence of lip cancer than women. Most women routinely apply some product to their lips throughout the day, so look for lip products with an SPF-15 or higher.
  • Donít Take Long Hot Showers: While everyone enjoys the soothing effect of a long hot shower, the hot water can strip the skin of its natural oils contributing to dry skin. Instead, use lukewarm water for a shorter period of time, and your skin will benefit in the long run.

Want to learn about the most effective ingredients in today's skin care products - today better known as cosmeceuticals? Learn how to select the cosmeceuticals best suited to the needs of your skin.

© 2011, 2013 by Lois W. Stern


You may forward or duplicate this article without permission, providing you include full author attribution, as detailed below.

Lois W. Stern is the published author of two books: Sex, Lies and Cosmetic Surgery and Tick Tock, Stop the Clock ~ Getting Pretty on Your Lunch Hour as well as numerous magazine articles. Her Professional Edition DVD is a popular aid to office staff while interacting with their patients.

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